Manhattan DA subpoenas lender for Trump's Chicago skyscraper in sign of expanding probe, report says

Chris Sommerfeldt, New York Daily News on

Published in Political News

The Manhattan district attorney subpoenaed documents late last year from a big-money investor that loaned Donald Trump’s company money to build a skyscraper in Chicago — a sign that the DA is continuing to expand his financial fraud investigation into the ex-president, according to a report Monday.

Sources told CNN that District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. slapped Fortress Investment Group with a grand jury subpoena relating to the $130 million it provided to the Trump Organization for the construction of the Windy City’s Trump International Hotel and Tower, which was completed in 2009.

Vance and Fortress declined to comment on the specifics of the subpoena, but the sizable Chicago loan is one of many Trump transactions shrouded in mystery.

By 2012, Fortress, a New York-based investment management firm focused on real estate, had forgiven more than $100 million of the Trump loan in order to secure a partial payoff at a time of severe economic strain stemming from the financial crisis.

According to CNN, Vance’s prosecutors are looking into whether Trump and his company reported the forgiven portions of the loan as income and paid taxes on it, as required by law.

The Trump Organization did not return a request for comment Monday.


The Fortress loan is among a complex web of financial transactions and business deals that Vance is scrutinizing as part of his investigation into whether Trump and his company committed criminal tax, bank and insurance fraud.

According to public court records, the DA probe appears mostly focused on whether the Trump Organization misrepresented the value of assets in order to secure bank loans and lower tax rates. The inquiry poses the biggest legal threat to Trump now that he’s no longer president.

Duncan Levin, a former fraud prosecutor in Vance’s office, said it’s significant that the DA is looking at real estate projects outside of New York as part of his Trump investigation.

“It sounds like they’re leaving no stone unturned,” Levin told the Daily News. “It sounds like they are looking into every deal the Trump Org has done, whether those deals were in New York or beyond.”


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