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Lawsuits Against Donald J. Trump and the Trump Administration page 1

Some of the legal issues of Donald J. Trump (aka Don the Con). Here you will find a short list of the lawsuits against Donald J. Trump and the Trump Administration. We have included lawsuits against Trump and the Trump Administration. We included the Trump Administration because Trump has corrupted most if not all federal agencies and that corruption has caused some federal agencies under Trump to do things they would not normal do and run afoul of the law. We may never know all of Donald J. Trump legal issues because he hides them with Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs), threats, false names and fixers. Donald J. Trump is a crook a deadbeat and a fraud. The more you know the better informed you will be to make your own determination on Donald J. Trump.

A Short List of Legal Issues of Donald J. Trump and the Trump Administration
He faces more than a dozen lawsuits and investigations
Josh Marcus, San Francisco, Louise Hall

Lawsuits and investigations have hung over Donald Trump throughout his business career, then his presidency. He’s reportedly faced an estimated 4,000 cases, plus two (unsuccessful) impeachments, two (successful) divorces, six bankruptcies, and 26 sexual misconduct allegations. Things are only going to get worse now that he’s a private citizen again, without the backing of the Justice Department. more...

“It really signals that she thinks, not only is this a strong—and likely winnable—criminal case, but that something is going to happen relatively soon,” says former SDNY prosecutor Danya Perry, discussing the New York AG joining the criminal probe into Trump’s businesses. video...

Bill Chappell, Andrea Bernstein, Ilya Marritz

New York Attorney General Letitia James is investigating former President Donald Trump's business, the Trump Organization, "in a criminal capacity," her office says, ratcheting up scrutiny of Trump's real estate transactions and other dealings. The state attorney general is joining forces with Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., who has been conducting a separate criminal inquiry into Trump's business practices and possible insurance or financial fraud as well as alleged hush money payments to two women who said they had affairs with Trump before he became president. Trump has in the past refused to cooperate with the investigations, calling them instances of "political persecution." Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way for Vance to subpoena Trump's tax returns and other financial documents. Here's a brief recap of where things currently stand: more...

By Sonia Moghe and Kara Scannell, CNN

(CNN) New York Attorney General Letitia James is joining the Manhattan district attorney's office in a criminal investigation of the Trump Organization, James' office said Tuesday. The attorney general office's investigation into the Trump Organization, which has been underway since 2019, will also continue as a civil probe, but the office recently informed Trump Organization officials of the criminal component. "We have informed the Trump Organization that our investigation into the organization is no longer purely civil in nature. We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA," James' spokesman Fabien Levy told CNN. "We have no additional comment." more...

By Sara Murray, Kara Scannell, Jessica Schneider and Jason Morris, CNN

(CNN) Five independently elected investigators have turned their attention to former President Donald Trump, a sign his legal woes are mounting as he no longer enjoys the protections once afforded to him by the Oval Office. Trump is now facing inquiries run by elected officials from Georgia to New York to Washington with only their constituents to answer to. Most are Democrats, but one key investigation was launched by a Georgia Republican who has faced heavy criticism from Trump since the election. And the former President's actions on his way out of office, including his attempts to overturn the 2020 election results and to stir up his supporters with baseless claims of fraud until they stormed the US Capitol on a harrowing January day, have only added to his legal problems. more...

Lawsuit seeks damages for ‘physical and emotional injuries caused by Trump’s wrongful conduct inciting a riot’ on 6 January
Guardian staff and agency

Two US Capitol Police officers have filed a lawsuit against Donald Trump, accusing him of inciting the deadly 6 January insurrection and saying he was responsible for physical and emotional injuries they suffered as a result. James Blassingame, a 17-year veteran of the force, and Sidney Hemby, an 11-year veteran, filed the lawsuit on Tuesday in US district court for the District of Columbia seeking damages of at least $75,000 each. “This is a complaint for damages by US Capitol Police officers for physical and emotional injuries caused by the defendant Donald Trump’s wrongful conduct inciting a riot on January 6, 2021, by his followers trying to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election,” the lawsuit said. more...

By Kara Scannell, CNN

New York (CNN) Donald Trump once said he calculated his net worth, to a degree, on his "feelings," and that he put the "best spin" on some of the assets. "I think everybody" exaggerates about the value of their properties. "Who wouldn't?" Did he inflate values? "Not beyond reason," Trump said, insisting he gave his "opinion" to a key associate and "ultimately" let that person make the decision, according to an exchange in a 2007 deposition. The exchange takes on fresh meaning this spring as Manhattan prosecutors investigate whether Trump's "best spin" was common practice in local real estate circles -- or if he crossed the line into illegal activity. The answer could determine whether Trump ends up facing criminal charges. The public record already sheds lots of light on how Trump has run the Trump Organization. A CNN examination of sworn depositions, interviews with former employees, and published accounts shows that Trump has tried repeatedly to push responsibility for his valuation decisions onto his chief financial officer. more...

By Kara Scannell, Sonia Moghe and Jason Morris, CNN

(CNN) After averting a conviction in his second impeachment trial, former President Donald Trump faces significant new legal threats as prosecutors in Georgia have joined those in New York to conduct criminal investigations into his actions. As the nation watched harrowing videos from January 6 of Trump supporters storming the US Capitol during the Senate impeachment trial this week, Georgia officials announced they have opened investigations into Trump's efforts to overturn the state's election results, including by pressuring officials to "find" votes to swing the outcome in his favor. The new investigations add to a heaping list of legal issues facing the former President that could threaten his finances and possibly his freedom. Out of office and without the protections that the presidency afforded him, Trump is now facing multiple criminal investigations, civil state inquiries and defamation lawsuits by two women accusing him of sexual assault. more...

Dan Mangan

New York Attorney General Letitia James said Monday that her office is continuing to actively investigate the Trump Organization’s alleged inflation and deflation of property values to evade tax liability in the state and receive other financial benefits. James also said that the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to allow the Manhattan District Attorney’s office to obtain eight years of former President Donald Trump’s income tax returns and other financial records as part of a criminal investigation would not affect her own ongoing civil probe. That ruling, issued Monday, “doesn’t change the tenor of our lawsuit,” James said in an interview for The New York Times’ DealBook DC Policy Project. “We will continue our investigation and upon completion we will announce our findings,” James said. more...

By John Kruzel

The Supreme Court on Monday rebuffed a bid by former President Trump to shield his tax returns and other financial records from a New York grand jury subpoena. The justices issued the order in the long-running dispute between Trump and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. (D) without comment or noted dissents. “The work continues,” Vance tweeted in response. The Supreme Court on Monday rebuffed a bid by former President Trump to shield his tax returns and other financial records from a New York grand jury subpoena. The justices issued the order in the long-running dispute between Trump and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. (D) without comment or noted dissents. “The work continues,” Vance tweeted in response. The court’s order comes in response to an emergency request Trump filed in October to the Supreme Court after losing several rounds in the lower courts. Vance's office has sought Trump's records since 2019, when a New York grand jury issued a subpoena to Trump's accounting firm, Mazars USA, for eight years of the former president's personal and business tax returns and other financial records. more...

Jeanine Santucci USA TODAY

WASHINGTON — As the Senate Judiciary Committee weighed Merrick Garland's confirmation as attorney general Monday, the fate of former President Donald Trump also looms for the Biden Justice Department. Federal judge Garland, who last served in the Justice Department during the Clinton administration and was blocked as Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court, will likely face pointed questions about Trump during his confirmation hearing. Trump, meanwhile, has lost any "presidential immunity" in a number of legal issues as he returns to life as a private citizen — not only stemming from his speech on Jan. 6 preceding the Capitol assault, but also regarding his business dealings and defamation cases for comments he made about women who accused him of sexual assault. more...

Daniels sued Trump for defamation after he dismissed her claims of being threatened to keep quiet about the tryst as a "total con job."
By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Monday rejected an appeal from porn star Stormy Daniels, who sought to revive a defamation lawsuit she filed against former President Donald Trump. The justices did not comment in leaving in place a lower court ruling dismissing the case. Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, alleges she had an affair with Trump in 2006 and was paid $130,000 as part of a nondisclosure agreement days before the 2016 presidential election. She sued him for defamation after he dismissed her claims of being threatened to keep quiet about the tryst as a “total con job.” A federal judge dismissed the lawsuit in 2018 and ordered Daniels to pay nearly $300,000 in attorneys’ fees. more...

One Hundred and Forty-seven Center Suits Filed Against Trump Since His Administration's Inception The Center for Biological Diversity is resisting Trump in every way possible — especially in the courts. From the moment he took office, our lawyers have been working  feverishly to oppose every attempt he's made to worsen climate change,  kill wildlife, endanger public health and destroy public lands. So far the Center has filed suits against Trump. Read on for details on every single one. Full Story

An analysis by USA Today published in June 2016 found that over the previous three decades, United States president Donald Trump and his businesses have been involved in 3,500 legal cases in U.S. federal courts and state court, an unprecedented number for a U.S. presidential candidate. Full Story

Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., and the NAACP are using the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871 in a lawsuit against former President Donald Trump and others.
By Char Adams

Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., and the NAACP are suing former President Donald Trump and his longtime ally Rudy Giuliani for allegedly conspiring with a pair of hate groups to storm the U.S. Capitol and block the Electoral College count in January. And they’re using a 150-year-old law as the basis of the suit. Thompson and the NAACP, the nation's oldest civil rights organization, allege in the suit, obtained by NBC News, that Trump, Giuliani, the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers used “intimidation, harassment, and threats,” to stop the vote count and caused the Jan. 6 Capitol riot in the process. This, they said, violated the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871. “I guess it tells you something when you can use a Ku Klux Klan law from the 1870s,” said Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University. “It’s part of a series of laws enacted after the Civil War. Everything old is, unfortunately, new again." more...

Heard on All Things Considered
Ryan Lucas

Of all the perks of being president, Donald Trump may soon miss most the legal protection that it affords. For four years, Trump has benefited from the de facto immunity from prosecution that all presidents enjoy while in office. But that cloak will pass to Joe Biden when he's sworn in on Jan. 20, leaving Trump out in the legal cold.

"Clearly, the president enjoyed immunity when he was in office," said Danya Perry, a former state and federal prosecutor in New York. "And it's possible, as a matter of law, that he could be indicted on Jan. 21." There's no indication that an indictment is imminent, and it's possible that Trump could emerge entirely unscathed. But there's also no doubt that once he's out of office, he'll be facing a higher level of legal jeopardy than he has in years. "His legal risks increase immeasurably come Jan. 21, both on the civil and the criminal side," Perry said.

Potential federal liability
The most developed case that could ensnare Trump might be out of the Southern District of New York. It stems from the federal prosecution against Michael Cohen, Trump's onetime personal attorney and fixer. Cohen pleaded guilty to a range of crimes, including arranging illegal hush money payments to keep women silent during the 2016 campaign about extramarital affairs they say they had with Trump before he was president. Trump has denied the allegations. Cohen has said he acted at the direction of and in coordination with Trump. Prosecutors, meanwhile, referred to the president in court papers as "Individual 1." more...

By Elliot Hannon

The litany of prosecutions President Donald Trump may be facing when he turns back into a plain old real estate magnate frog on Jan. 20, 2021, just got a little longer, the New York Times reported Friday. Trump’s unseemly business dealings have manifested themselves in some murky tax filings, both of which have been a source of interest for New York state investigators: Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. is conducting a criminal investigation while state Attorney General Letitia James carries out a civil one. Both probes, the Times reports, have recently expanded to include tens of millions of dollars in tax write-offs by Trump and his business, the Trump Organization, including deductions taken for paying his daughter Ivanka as a consultant while she was simultaneously on the payroll of the company as an executive officer. The investigations have ramped up of late, and, the Times reports, subpoenas have been issued to the Trump Organization.

Trump has paid essentially no taxes for decades by exploiting tax loopholes that allowed him to cover his substantial business losses, but also by deploying accounting methods that look an awful lot like fraud. To help keep his tax bill close to nonexistent, the Times now reports Trump took $26 million in tax deductions from 2010 to 2018 for fees paid to unidentified consultants that Trump classified as business expenses. When it comes to Ivanka, $747,622 in payments were made to Trump’s daughter through the consulting company TTT Consulting LLC, of which Ivanka is a co-owner. Ivanka disclosed the income when joining the White House in 2017. The exact same amount was listed in the Trump Organization’s tax deductions for a pair of hotel projects.

“While companies can deduct professional fees, the Internal Revenue Service requires that consulting arrangements be market-based and reasonable, as well as ‘ordinary and necessary’ to running a business,” the Times notes. “The I.R.S. has sometimes rejected attempts to write off consulting fees if they were meant to avoid taxes and did not reflect arms-length business relationships.” While these federal returns would fall under the jurisdiction of the federal government, the Times points out that they would also be included Trump’s New York state returns, which would provide an avenue for state-level prosecution. more...

An update on the many investigations into the president’s business interests.
By Ray Suarez

You could be forgiven for losing track of all the investigations into President Donald Trump’s business—there are just so many of them. They take a long time, they’re complex, and there’s no linear story structure. The latest salvo came from the New York State Attorney General’s Office, which is investigating whether Trump’s company improperly inflated the value of its assets to get tax benefits and loans. But how close are we to the truth? On Thursday’s episode of What Next, I checked in with David Fahrenthold, a Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative reporter at the Washington Post, to find out what we know and still don’t know about the Trump Organization and its finances. Our conversation has been condensed and edited for clarity.

David Fahrenthold: Closer is the key word. We know a lot more about the state of its businesses, its business partners, the pressures it’s under, and its business with the federal government than we did when we started. But in many ways it’s still a black box. There’s still a lot I don’t know. The Trump Organization is facing a level of legal scrutiny that it really has never faced before. It has always sort of skated by, both because Trump was so difficult to deal with—he was so contentious when you went after him as an investigator—and because it wasn’t very big. None of its balance sheets were ever that big, and so people didn’t feel like it was worth the trouble. Now, that’s changed. It’s facing some pretty serious investigations, and that could cost it a lot of money in legal fees, but it could also bring some significant damages, and, perhaps most importantly, it could crack open this black box of a company in a way that we really have not seen before. “Trump has always exploited honor systems. He does what the honor system doesn’t expect.” — David Fahrenthold.

Dan Mangan

A New York judge has ordered lawyers for President Donald Trump’s company and his son Eric to court later in September to explain why they should not be subject to subpoenas issued by the state attorney general’s office as part of an ongoing civil investigation. Attorney General Letitia James is investigating whether the Trump Organization incorrectly valued several real estate assets on annual financial statements that were used to obtain loans, as well as to get economic and tax benefits related to those properties.

The probe comes as Trump, a Republican, is facing a tough reelection fight against Democratic nominee Joe Biden, a former vice president, and as Trump seeks to block a grand jury subpoena to his accountants for his income tax returns and other financial records from the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. Unlike James’ civil investigation, Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance Jr.’s office is conducting a criminal probe.

"We feel we have no choice but to take action to protect our rights."
By Catherine Thorbecke and Luke Barr

TikTok has filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration over the government's pending ban of the popular video-sharing app, the company announced Monday. The company said in a statement that the executive order announcing the ban, signed by President Donald Trump earlier this month, has the potential to strip the rights of its community "without any evidence to justify such an extreme action, and without any due process."  The app, where users share short video clips with music, has exploded in popularity in recent months, especially among Gen Z-ers, and has an estimated 65 million to 80 million users in the U.S. "Now is the time for us to act," TikTok said. "We do not take suing the government lightly, however we feel we have no choice but to take action to protect our rights, and the rights of our community and employees."

New York attorney general files legal action against Trump Organization, revealing state investigation into the company’s financial dealings
By David A. Fahrenthold

The New York attorney general is investigating President Trump’s private business for allegedly misleading lenders by inflating the value of its assets, the attorney general’s office said Monday in a legal filing. In the filing, signed by a deputy to Attorney General Letitia James, the attorney general’s office said it is investigating Trump’s use of “Statements of Financial Condition” — documents Trump sent to lenders, summarizing his assets and debts. The filing asks a New York state judge to compel the Trump Organization to provide information it has been withholding from investigators — including a subpoena seeking an interview with the president’s son Eric.

The attorney general’s office said it began investigating after Trump’s former lawyer and “fixer,” Michael Cohen, told Congress in February 2019 that Trump had used these statements to inflate his net worth to lenders. The filing said that Eric Trump had been scheduled to be interviewed in the investigation in late July, but abruptly canceled that interview. The filing says that Eric Trump is now refusing to be interviewed, with Eric Trump’s lawyers saying, “We cannot allow the requested interview to go forward … pursuant to those rights afforded to every individual under the Constitution.”

Many of the details of the investigation were redacted or left out of the filing. But it mentioned valuations of three Trump properties: a Los Angeles golf course, an office building at 40 Wall St. and a country estate called “Seven Springs” in Westchester County, N.Y. Last year, The Washington Post reported that Trump had inflated the potential sale value of the Seven Springs property in a “Statement of Financial Condition” — a type of document he sent to potential lenders to demonstrate his wealth.

The Trump Organization has stalled a state inquiry into the financing of four properties for months, Attorney General Letitia James said in court papers.
By William K. Rashbaum and Danny Hakim

The New York State attorney general’s office has asked a judge to order Eric Trump to provide testimony under oath and the Trump Organization to hand over documents about four Trump properties it is investigating, asserting the company has stalled the inquiry for months, court papers show. Mr. Trump, who is President Trump’s son and the executive vice president of the company, abruptly canceled an interview under oath with the attorney general’s office last month, and last week the Trump Organization told the office that the company and its lawyers would not comply with seven subpoenas related to the investigation.

The filings in State Supreme Court in Manhattan come as President Trump faces legal actions on several fronts. The Manhattan district attorney’s office has suggested in court filings that it is investigating possible bank and insurance fraud by the president and the Trump Organization. The attorney general, Letitia James, started the civil inquiry in March 2019 after President Trump’s former personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, told Congress that the president had inflated his assets in financial statements to banks when he was seeking loans and had understated them to reduce his real estate taxes. The office initially subpoenaed records from two of the Trump Organization’s lenders, Deutsche Bank and Investors Bank, seeking loan records for four of the company’s big projects and a failed effort to buy the Buffalo Bills of the N.F.L. in 2014.

The Trump Organization at first provided some information and sought to forestall the attorney general from seeking a similar court order eight months ago, after the company failed to turn over information on a particular property. But more recently, the attorney general’s office said, the Trump Organization had stalled and stonewalled, according to the filings, some of which were sealed. The investigation is reviewing a number of Trump properties, including several that were raised in Mr. Cohen’s congressional testimony. The Seven Springs estate in Westchester County, N.Y., the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago, 40 Wall Street in Lower Manhattan and the Trump National Golf Club, Los Angeles were the subject of the subpoenas. The attorney general’s office has also asked the judge to order two lawyers to sit for interviews under oath: Charles Martabano, a land-use lawyer who does work for the Trump Organization, and Sheri A. Dillon, who has represented President Trump and his company on tax matters.

By Marshall Cohen and Kristen Holmes, CNN

(CNN) Embattled Postmaster General Louis DeJoy reversed course Tuesday, saying that all changes being made to the Postal Service would be suspended until after the November 3 election, just as 20 Democratic states announced plans to file federal lawsuits. DeJoy said that some of the deferred decisions mean that retail hours at post offices will not change, mail processing equipment and blue collection boxes will remain in place and no mail processing facilities will be closed. At least 20 Democratic attorneys general across the country are launching a multi-pronged legal effort to push back on the recent changes that disrupted mail delivery across the country and triggered accusations that Trump and his appointees are trying to undermine mail-in voting.

The Democratic attorneys general plan to argue that DeJoy is illegally changing mail procedures ahead of the 2020 election as the Post Office braces for an unusually high number of mail-in ballots as voters look to avoid casting ballots at polling centers where they could potentially contract the coronavirus. DeJoy "acted outside of his authority to implement changes to the postal system, and did not follow the proper procedures under federal law," according to a statement from Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson. The USPS and DeJoy have maintained that the changes are intended to improve the agency's dire financial situation. DeJoy also rejects accusations that he made these changes at Trump's behest.

At least two lawsuits are being filed Tuesday. One led by Washington state will be joined by Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and Wisconsin. Another group of state Democratic attorneys general are filing a similar lawsuit in a Pennsylvania federal court. These states include California, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Delaware, Maine and North Carolina. The lawsuit led by Washington state makes liberal use of Trump's words and tweets against mail-in voting and connects them to the DeJoy's actions, saying the President has attacked mail-in voting more than 70 times "without supporting evidence."

New York’s Cyrus Vance is seeking eight years of tax returns. Reports of ‘extensive and protracted criminal conduct’ cited
Associated Press

A New York prosecutor trying to access Donald Trump’s tax returns told a judge on Monday that he was justified in demanding them, citing public reports of “extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization”. Trump’s lawyers last month said the grand jury subpoena for the tax returns was issued in bad faith and amounted to harassment of the president. The Manhattan district attorney, Cyrus Vance, is seeking eight years of the Republican president’s personal and corporate tax records, but has disclosed little about what prompted him to request the records, other than part of the investigation relates to payoffs to women to silence them about alleged affairs with Trump in the past.

In a court filing on Monday, though, attorneys for Vance said Trump’s arguments that the subpoena was too broad stemmed from “the false premise” that the investigation was limited to so-called “hush-money” payments. “This Court is already aware that this assertion is fatally undermined by undisputed information in the public record,” Vance’s lawyers wrote. They said that information confirms the validity of a subpoena seeking evidence related to potentially improper financial transactions by a variety of individuals and entities over a period of years.

By Kara Scannell and Erica Orden, CNN

(CNN) Manhattan prosecutors on Monday asked a federal judge to dismiss President Donald Trump's lawsuit challenging a subpoena for his financial records, emphasizing that their investigation extends beyond hush-money payments and pointing to public reports of "extensive and protracted criminal conduct" at the Trump Organization. Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance's lawyers have previously said the probe is expansive, and on Monday they pointed out that when the subpoena was issued, "there were public allegations of possible criminal activity at Plaintiff's New York County-based Trump Organization dating back over a decade." Last week, lawyers for Trump filed an amended complaint seeking to block the state grand jury subpoena to Trump's long-time accountant Mazars USA for eight years of personal and business records by arguing the subpoena was "wildly overbroad" and issued in bad faith. Trump's latest legal challenge comes after the US Supreme Court ruled last month that the President does not have broad immunity from a state grand jury subpoena.

In their court papers earlier Monday, lawyers for Vance wrote of Trump's amended complaint: "This 'new' filing contains nothing new whatsoever, and Plaintiff has utterly failed to make a 'stronger showing of bad faith than he previously made to this Court." The district attorney's office added that Trump's lawyers are relying on a false assumption that the investigation is limited to hush-money payments made to two women during the 2016 presidential campaign who alleged affairs with Trump. Trump has denied the affairs. "Plaintiff's argument that the Mazars Subpoena is overbroad fails for the additional reason that it rests on the false premise that the grand jury's investigation is limited to so-called 'hush-money' payments made by Michael Cohen on behalf of Plaintiff in 2016," the district attorney's office said. CNN has previously reported that Vance is investigating other transactions that go beyond the hush-money payments.

By Marissa J. Lang

PORTLAND, Ore. — Protesters who say they were tear-gassed, shot at, pepper-sprayed and assaulted outside a federal courthouse while peacefully demonstrating and rendering aid to others sued the Trump administration Monday over its use of force during nightly demonstrations in downtown Portland. A group of five women and two organizations, including longtime Black Lives Matter protesters and the yellow-clad Wall of Moms group that assembles nightly to stand between protesters and federal law enforcement officers, filed a lawsuit alleging that several agencies — the Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Federal Protective Service — have violated their constitutional rights of free speech, assembly and due process and against unreasonable seizures.

The agencies named in the lawsuit have deployed agents to protect the Mark O. Hatfield U.S. Courthouse from a nightly barrage of fireworks and projectiles, including water bottles, canned food and paint, during demonstrations against police violence, racial inequity and what many in Portland have come to view as a federal occupation. The lawsuit marks the latest court battle to rise from the smoke and gas of the nightly standoffs in Oregon’s largest city. The American Civil Liberties Union in the past week sued the Trump administration and the Portland police department over alleged attacks on street medics, volunteers who render medical aid to injured demonstrators. U.S. District Judge Michael Simon issued a restraining order that bars federal agents from dispersing, arresting, threatening to arrest or targeting journalists or legal observers at protests.

The attorneys general blasted what they called the government's "cruel, abrupt, and unlawful action to expel international students amidst the pandemic."
By Daniel Arkin

Seventeen states and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration Monday, seeking to halt a new federal rule that strips international students of their visas if their coursework is entirely online when classes resume in the fall. The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court in Massachusetts, takes aim at what the 18 attorneys general call the federal government's "cruel, abrupt, and unlawful action to expel international students amidst the pandemic that has wrought death and disruption across the United States." The attorneys general behind the suit are seeking an injunction that would block the order from going into effect. “The Trump administration didn't even attempt to explain the basis for this senseless rule, which forces schools to choose between keeping their international students enrolled and protecting the health and safety of their campuses," Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey said in a statement announcing the suit. The lawsuit, which names the Department of Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement as defendants, is the latest legal challenge to the Trump administration's rule.

Jorge L. Ortiz - USA TODAY

At a time when President Donald Trump is pressuring schools to open for in-person instruction in the fall, some universities are fighting back. Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on Wednesday filed suit in U.S. District Court in Boston, challenging the administration’s attempt to bar foreign students from attending colleges that will teach entirely online in the fall term. On Monday, the Immigration Customs Enforcement agency announced policy changes that would keep international students from entering the U.S. or make them subject to deportation if the colleges they were enrolled in taught only remotely, as many schools are planning to do because of the coronavirus pandemic. The new mandate, which said foreign students at those universities must leave the country or take steps like transferring to a school that offers in-person learning, threatens to upend life for the approximately 1 million students from abroad who yearly attend American colleges.

By Reid Wilson

State attorneys general have filed an unprecedented number of lawsuits against the Trump administration, as Democratic-led states exercise new levers of power to block some of President Trump’s most controversial initiatives. States have formed coalitions to file 103 multi-state suits against the administration in its first three years, according to data compiled by Paul Nolette, a political scientist at Marquette University. The vast majority of those suits, 96, have been led by Democratic attorneys general. By contrast, states filed 78 multi-state suits in the eight years of President Obama’s administration, and 76 multi-state suits during President George W. Bush’s eight years in office. Democratic attorneys general sued Trump 40 times in his first year in office alone, more lawsuits than have ever been filed against an administration in a single year. “Every time this guy breaks the law, we take him to court,” said Xavier Becerra (D), California’s attorney general who has led 31 suits and been party to 25 others. Joining with other states to file suit “adds strength, it certainly adds value, and it shows unity. It demonstrates that the unlawful action that the Trump administration is looking to take impacts more than just one state.” The attorneys general have sued the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) more than any other agency in government. All told, the EPA has faced 31 lawsuits over proposals to roll back Obama-era environmental laws or to implement new rules. States have sued the Department of Health and Human Services and the Interior Department about a dozen times each.

By Alexandra Hutzler

Although the Senate is all but certain to acquit President Donald Trump in his impeachment trial, he still faces dozens of investigations into his administration, his family and his businesses that could be resolved before the 2020 election. Democrats have been making their case for days now as to why Trump should be convicted and removed from office, alleging that he abused his power by pressuring the Ukrainian government to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden for personal gain. "If the truth doesn't matter, we're lost," Representative Adam Schiff, the leading Democrat on impeachment, made in a plea to senators on Thursday. "The framers [of the Constitution] couldn't protect us from ourselves if right and truth don't matter. And you know that what he did was not right." Meanwhile, lawmakers will hear Trump's defense as the president's legal team will take the podium on Saturday to begin advocating his innocence in his dealings with Ukraine. They're expected to argue that the articles of impeachment are "made up," and that Democrats "rigged" the process.

A list of notable lawsuits involving United States President Donald Trump. The list excludes cases naming the president as a matter of course, including habeas corpus requests. Full Story

By aaron katersky

President Donald Trump has been ordered by a New York State judge to pay $2 million to a group of nonprofit organizations as part of a settlement in a civil lawsuit stemming from persistent violations of state charities laws.  The payment is the final resolution to a case brought by the New York attorney general's office after the Trump Foundation held a fundraiser for military veterans during the 2016 campaign.

The televised fundraiser took in nearly $3 million in donations that were dispersed on the eve of the Iowa caucuses as directed by then-campaign chief Corey Lewandowski. The two million must be paid by President Trump himself for breaching his fiduciary duty to properly oversee the foundation that bears his name. "I direct Mr. Trump to pay the $2,000,000, which would have gone to the Foundation if it were still in existence, on a pro rata basis to the Approved Recipients," Judge Saliann Scarpulla wrote.

The lawsuit filed by the state's attorney general accused President Trump -- along with his children, Donald Jr., Eric and Ivanka -- of conflating charity with politics, repeatedly using charitable donations for personal, political and business gains, including legal settlements, campaign contributions and even to purchase a portrait of Trump to hang at one of his hotels..

Filed in state Supreme Court by the attorney general's Charities Bureau, the suit sought to dissolve the private New York-based foundation and prevent the Trumps from serving as directors of any nonprofits in the future. The foundation has already agreed to cease operations and must pay the two million to a consortium of nonprofit organizations. Full Story

Trump could get whacked by legal losses in coming months
Court rulings could say Trump is illegally profiting from foreign governments, that he must hand over financial records and that lawmakers should see more Russia probe evidence.

The final year of President Donald Trump’s first term will be loaded with legal landmines — and it’s not just the impeachment cases. Trump could face court rulings that say he is illegally profiting from foreign governments, that he must hand over his tax returns and that lawmakers should see more of Robert Mueller’s Russia probe evidence. He may even get hit with Supreme Court decisions that rebuff his administration’s bold claims of presidential immunity from prosecution and congressional investigations.

Nothing is certain with the courts, of course. The Supreme Court might not take up every case, while others could drag out beyond Election Day 2020. Judges could rule narrowly in some matters and Trump could prevail in others. But the president’s no-compromise, litigation-first defense strategy has created a queue of potentially perilous disputes that could force embarrassing testimony or unflattering document disclosures at the peak of his bid for a second term.

Bigger issues are at play, too.

Any Supreme Court ruling on these cases could define the contours of executive branch power for Trump and his successors, setting precedents on heated questions such as whether a sitting president can be criminally investigated and when the White House can resist a congressional subpoena. It could also offer some clarity to the Constitution’s vague and largely untested emoluments clause, which bars federal officials from receiving payments from foreign governments.

Most important is a traditional January deadline that looms for securing a coveted spot on the Supreme Court’s April calendar, which comes with the prospect of a decision in late June, well before voters go to the polls. Any case it doesn’t take for this term is highly unlikely to be decided before next November’s election. Here’s a look at the court cases and where they stack up with respect to potential Supreme Court review.

Impeachment witnesses

Who has the ultimate power to get witnesses to talk — or to keep them quiet? That’s the question at the heart of a court battle stemming from the House’s impeachment inquiry. Lawmakers are looking at whether Trump pressured Ukraine to launch politically advantageous probes and has subpoenaed a slate of current and former White House officials involved in those efforts.

But the White House has issued a blanket, do-not-comply order to anyone who ever worked in the administration, leaving potential congressional witnesses in a tough spot: Do they follow the boss or risk the legal ramifications of being a no-show on Capitol Hill? In an effort to get clarity, Trump adviser Charles Kupperman last month went to the courts to request a ruling on the matter. Should he comply with the House subpoena or the White House no-show directive?

District Judge Richard Leon, appointed by President George W. Bush, set a Dec. 10 hearing in the case and indicated he’d like to rule by late December or early January. There’s an added wrinkle. Kupperman shares a lawyer with his former boss, John Bolton, the former Trump national security adviser who is also expected to get a congressional subpoena to discuss the Ukraine affair. During a preliminary hearing on the Kupperman case last week, the attorney for both men acknowledged Bolton could soon join the case. Full Story

Trump firm 'refusing to pay' legal bill for windfarm case
Scottish government says US president’s company has not accepted bill of tens of thousands of pounds
By Severin Carrell Scotland editor

Donald Trump’s family firm is refusing to accept a legal bill worth tens of thousands of pounds after he lost a lengthy court battle against a windfarm near his Aberdeenshire golf course, according to the Scottish government. A Scottish court ruled in February this year the Trump Organization had to pay the Scottish government’s legal costs after his attempt to block an 11-turbine windfarm in Aberdeen Bay ended with defeat in the UK supreme court in 2015. The Scottish government has said Trump’s firm has refused to accept the sum it had put forward or reach an agreement on costs, so the case is now in the hands of a court-appointed adjudicator. “As the amount of expenses has not been agreed, we are awaiting a date for the auditor of the court of session to determine the account. We expect payment when this has been completed,” a government spokeswoman said. Full Story

Trump's attempt to keep tax returns secret in New York rejected by judge
NEW YORK — A federal judge has rejected President Trump's challenge to the release of his tax returns for a New York state criminal probe. Judge Victor Marrero ruled Monday. He said he cannot endorse such a "categorical and limitless assertion of presidential immunity from judicial process." The returns had been sought by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. His office is investigating the Trump Organization's involvement in buying the silence of two women who claimed to have had affairs with the president. Mr. Trump's lawyers have said the investigation is politically motivated and that the quest for his tax records should be stopped because he is immune from any criminal probe as long as he is president. Full Story

Appeals court allows Trump emoluments case to move forward
By Brett Samuels

A federal appeals court in New York on Friday ruled that a lawsuit accusing President Trump of violating the Emoluments Clause can proceed after a lower court had thrown out the case. A panel of judges with the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 in favor of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), which has alleged that the president violated the constitutional clause by refusing to put his business assets in a blind trust while in office and profiting off the presidency. But the case had been dismissed by a lower court in December 2017.

"Plaintiffs have plausibly pleaded that the President’s ownership of hospitality businesses that compete with them will induce government patrons of the hospitality industry to favor Trump businesses over those of the Plaintiffs so as to secure favorable governmental action from the President and Executive branch," Judge Pierre Leval wrote in the decision. CREW welcomed the reinstatement of the case. "If President Trump would like to avoid the case going further and curtail the serious harms caused by his unconstitutional conduct, now would be a good time to divest from his businesses and end his violations of the Emoluments Clauses of the Constitution," Executive Director Noah Bookbinder said in a statement.

The ruling revives yet another lawsuit for Trump to defend against. He is also warding off legal challenges involving his tax returns, and his administration is facing numerous legal challenges of its policies on immigration, health care and other topics. Watchdogs have raised concerns about the president's decision not to put his company in a blind trust, noting that lobbyists, foreign officials and political insiders may frequent his businesses to earn favor with the administration. The issue has gained new urgency as lawmakers and watchdogs raise concerns about government officials' use of Trump properties. The president last month suggested he may host world leaders at next year's Group of Seven (G-7) summit at his Doral resort near Miami, and the Air Force is looking into its pilots habit of staying at Trump's property in Turnberry, Scotland, while refueling. Full Story

U.S. appeals court rules against Trump in foreign payments case
Andrew Chung, Jan Wolfe

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A U.S. federal appeals court on Friday revived a lawsuit alleging President Donald Trump violated the U.S. Constitution by profiting from foreign and domestic officials who patronized his hotels and restaurants, adding to the corruption claims against Trump. The New York-based 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals set aside a lower court ruling that had thrown out the case because the people who sued could not prove they were harmed by Trump’s actions and his role as president.

Friday’s ruling dealt with preliminary questions relating to whether the case should be heard, without directly addressing whether Trump violated the law. The lawsuit, initially filed by plaintiffs including the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, accused the Republican president of failing to disentangle himself from his hotels and other businesses, making him vulnerable to inducements by officials seeking to curry favor. The case alleged violations of the U.S. Constitution’s anti-corruption “emoluments” provisions, which ban the president from accepting gifts or payments from foreign governments without congressional consent.

A Justice Department spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Trump, a wealthy real estate developer who as president regularly visits his own hotels, resorts and golf clubs, maintains ownership of his businesses but has ceded day-to-day control to his sons. Critics have said that is not a sufficient safeguard. Friday’s ruling comes in a lawsuit filed days after Trump took office in January 2017. The plaintiffs included a New York hotel owner, an events booker in Washington and a restaurant trade group that allege lost patronage, wages and commissions from clients who now prefer Trump’s businesses over theirs because of the ability to gain the president’s favor. The plaintiffs cite examples of foreign government entities, including the Embassy of Kuwait and a delegation from Malaysia, choosing Trump’s properties, such as the Trump International Hotel in Washington, over other venues. Full Story

The Trump Administration Has Been Sued More Than Any Other Since 1982
By Natasha Bach

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra is racking up his lawsuits against the Trump administration. The state’s AG added yet another to his belt this week, challenging proposed legislation that would invalidate the Flores settlement, thereby enabling the administration to indefinitely detain undocumented children. President Trump and his administration have been sued by state attorneys general more times than any president since Ronald Reagan. As of late August, there are currently 88 ongoing multi-state lawsuits against the administration, according to the latest count from State Attorneys General Data, a database compiled by Dr. Paul Nolette, associate professor of political science at Marquette University.

This represents more than double the next highest number, 38, which is the number of times the Obama administration was sued in the president’s second term. The lawsuits against the Trump Administration have been led mainly by Democratic AGs, while the lawsuits against the Obama Administration were mostly let by Republicans coalitions, according to the database. Nolette’s tally includes multi-state lawsuits against specific actions taken by various U.S. government departments. He defines multi-state lawsuits as those in which “multiple states filed an original complaint or petition,” instances in which “multiple states joined an existing non-state lawsuit as intervenors,” cases when “only one state appeared as a plaintiff...but a multi-state coalition filed an amicus curiae brief supporting the plaintiff state,” and “non-state cases in which a multi-state coalition sought to intervene, but the court denied the motion to intervene.” Full Story

Here Are the Other Investigations President Trump Still Faces
By Abigail Abrams

A summary of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s confidential report to the Justice Department released Sunday said the 22-month investigation concluded without finding evidence of Trump campaign collusion with the Russian government during the 2016 presidential election, nor did it conclude that President Donald Trump committed the crime of obstruction of justice. Mueller cautioned that his report does not exonerate the President, either. Trump trumpeted the findings of the report, which recommended no additional indictments, as a victory, tweeting, “No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!” However, Trump is not out from under the investigative microscope. There are more than a dozen other investigations and lawsuits looking into the President, his businesses, his family and his associates. This is not an exhaustive list, as there may be investigations that have not yet been made public, and there are other loosely connected players also being investigated thanks to Mueller’s work. But here are the key legal threats still facing Trump and his inner circle. Full Story

Donald Trump Has Used A Secretive Justice System To Keep Lawsuits Against Him Out Of Court
By Zoe Tillman - BuzzFeed News Reporter

Trump, his campaign, and his companies have used arbitration to try to move potentially damaging and embarrassing claims out of the public court process. WASHINGTON — Jane Doe, a hospice worker from California, was still undecided midway through an investor recruitment meeting in 2014 for a multilevel marketing company, ACN. But the promotional video she watched featuring Donald Trump — still in the midst of his run as star of The Celebrity Apprentice — won her over. Trump’s assurances that ACN was “one of the best businesses” were convincing. He already had so much money, Jane Doe told herself, he wasn’t trying to scam her.

She paid the $499 registration fee. She spent thousands of dollars attending ACN conferences, hosting recruitment events to sign up other investors, and attending local meetings, all while trying to sell ACN’s video conferencing and telecommunications products. In the end, according to a lawsuit Jane Doe and other aggrieved ACN investors filed under pseudonyms against now-president Trump last year, she received one check. She earned $38. The investors are accusing Trump — who appeared in multiple promotional materials for ACN and spoke at the company's investor conferences — of fraud.

They claim that he falsely touted ACN as a profitable and low-risk investment, even though he knew or should have known it was a bad investment, and that neither he nor ACN disclosed that he was being paid to endorse the company. Jane Doe now finds herself in a situation familiar to Stormy Daniels, former Trump campaign and White House staffers, employees who worked for Trump’s companies, and investors who put money into his businesses: Trump is arguing to move the lawsuit out of court — where evidence, arguments, and hearings generally are a matter of public record — and into the more secretive private justice system he has used for more than a decade to keep these kinds of unflattering allegations quiet, known as arbitration.

Of the thousands of lawsuits filed by or against Trump and his companies over the years — a USA Today investigation identified at least 3,500 cases — the vast majority have played out in court. But in a small number of cases in which Trump, his 2016 campaign, or his businesses have been accused of discrimination, shady business practices, and other bad acts, the president and his lawyers have invoked clauses in contracts that give them the power to force these disputes behind closed doors. Full Story

Manhattan DA subpoenas Trump Organization in Stormy Daniels hush money investigation
By Kara Scannell, CNN

(CNN) - The Manhattan District Attorney's Office sent a subpoena to the Trump Organization as part of an investigation into the hush money paid to two women who alleged affairs with President Donald Trump, according to a lawyer for the company. Marc L. Mukasey, attorney for the Trump Organization, said on Thursday, "This is a political hit job. It's just harassment of the President, his family and his business, using subpoenas and leaks as weapons. We will respond as appropriate." The subpoena, which was sent on Thursday, is seeking communications between the company and representatives for Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, the women who alleged they had affairs with Trump more than a decade ago, according to a person familiar with the matter.

A spokesman for District Attorney Cyrus Vance declined comment. The new investigation by state prosecutors was first reported by The New York Times. It comes after federal prosecutors announced they had closed their investigation a few weeks ago. This is the second time Vance has stepped into an investigation swirling around the President after federal prosecutors completed their own investigation. In March, Vance's office announced a 16-count indictment charging Paul Manafort, Trump's former campaign chairman, with state crimes. That announcement came just one hour after Manafort had been sentenced on multiple financial and lobbying charges brought by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Federal prosecutors with the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District in New York investigated the hush money payments after a referral from Mueller. For months, federal prosecutors examined whether company officials broke the law, including in their effort to reimburse Michael Cohen, Trump's former personal attorney and employee of the Trump Organization. Full Story

Trump faces legal issues for the rest of his presidency, no matter what Mueller finds
By Chris MegerianStaff Writer

President Trump is likely to celebrate if the final report from special counsel Robert S. Mueller III echoes Trump’s relentless claims of “no collusion” with Russia — or at least doesn’t outline a criminal conspiracy between his 2016 campaign and the Kremlin. No matter what Mueller concludes, the president remains in considerable legal jeopardy. The Russia probe spawned a web of federal, state and congressional inquiries into virtually every aspect of Trump’s career — the company that bears his name, the campaign that won him the White House, the inauguration that celebrated his improbable victory, and the administration that he currently leads from the Oval Office.

Prosecutors in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Washington and Virginia are all pulling at threads that the FBI started unraveling two years ago. Legal problems, and possibly further indictments of Trump’s friends and aides, are likely to shadow the president for the rest of his White House tenure. “Once you turn over one stone, there are a host of other matters that come to light,” said Bruce Udolf, who worked for the independent counsel’s office that investigated President Clinton. “And you start turning over those stones as well.” Full Story

Trump’s Panama hotel company accused in lawsuit of tax evasion
By Christian Berthelsen - Bloomberg News

A onetime business partner of Donald Trump’s hotel management company claimed in a court filing that the president’s firm evaded income taxes on a project in Panama and under-reported employee salaries there. The accusations were contained in a court filing Monday by the business partner, Orestes Fintiklis, and his company, Ithaca Capital Investments, as part of a lawsuit against Trump International Hotels Management. Ithaca assumed control of the property after Trump withdrew from it in March 2018, and a bitter feud over the development has ensued.

Ithaca claims it’s now exposed to millions of dollars in liabilities because of the alleged tax underpayments on Trump’s management fees, which it says were discovered after Panamanian authorities launched an audit of the project a year ago. The under-payments also had the effect of making the development’s finances appear better than they actually were, according to the complaint in Manhattan federal court. ”Mr. Fintiklis is trying to distract from his own fraud and material breaches,” the president’s company said in a statement. “The Trump Organization did not evade any taxes. To the extent any taxes were to be withheld, it was the responsibility of the condominium that owns the hotel. The Trump Organization’s only role was to manage the property.” Full Story

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