The Trump Organization was fined $4,000 in October 2021 for “willfully disobeying” four subpoenas and three court orders pertaining to the wide-ranging criminal fraud investigation conducted by the Manhattan district attorney’s office, the documents showed.
“Despite this Court’s demonstrated restraint and repeated efforts to resolve these discovery disputes without invoking sanctions, there comes a time when a court must enforce its authority. In this matter, that time is now,” the court ruling decreed.
Officials at the Trump Organization never attempted to quash the subpoenas or pursued court intervention and “missed deadline after deadline” despite clear warnings, Judge Juan Merchan explained in the 28-page ruling dated Dec. 8, 2021. Some key names in the unsealed ruling were redacted.
“The record is clear that the company failed to produce responsive documents without explanation,” Merchan further explained. “There can be no dispute that the deadlines were not met.”
Last week, the Trump Organization was found guilty of tax fraud for a long-running ploy to evade taxes and could stare down fines of up to $1.6 million. Two company entities — the Trump Corporation and the Trump Payroll Corp — were found guilty on all 17 counts lodged against them.
Former Chief Financial Officer Allan Weisselberg, who entered a guilty plea for fraud and other crimes, gave testimony against the company and received a reduced sentence of five months in jail, down from 15 years. Trump, who announced his 2024 campaign last month, was not on trial, but prosecutors sought to highlight his role in the scheme.
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg also has a separate ongoing criminal investigation directly tied to Trump scrutinizing hush-money payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels and purported valuation manipulations in his financial statements.
Bragg has received assistance from New York Attorney General Letitia James who unveiled a whopping $250 million civil lawsuit against Trump and three of his adult children over allegedly cooking the books in asset valuations. At one point during her investigation earlier this year, Trump was personally held in contempt of court — a charge that was later lifted after he paid fees for defying a subpoena.
Trump is also facing possible legal scrutiny from the Fulton Country District Attorney Office’s investigation into efforts to overturn the 2020 election in Georgia. And last month Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Jack Smith as special counsel to oversee the Justice Department’s Trump-related investigations regarding the Jan. 6 Capitol riot and the Mar-a-Lago classified documents debacle.