A three-judge appeals court told attorneys for President Donald Trump that their arguments for why the president shouldn’t have to turn over his tax returns to a Manhattan grand jury are “highly contrived” and suggested that Trump cannot continue to hide eight years of his taxes as required by a ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this year:
“Three judges for the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals questioned the argument put forth by the president’s legal team that the Manhattan district attorney’s subpoena is overly broad and should be thrown out.
“Judge Pierre Leval seemed unconvinced by their theory that the district attorney’s office should not be allowed to subpoena documents on a broad range of Trump’s business dealings.”
Leval went even further, writing:
“It’s investigating fraud with respect to a tax return filed in New York, by a New York taxpayer. It needs to investigate all the documents on which that tax return will be based and there’s no reason why that wouldn’t include business operations outside the county of New York.”
The appeals court also suggested that a separate ruling from a three-judge panel on the 2nd Circuit issued September 1 was all Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance needed to collect Trump’s tax information from his accounting firm, Mazars, The Washington Post reports:
“Existence of the complaint, doesn’t stop the district attorney from enforcing the subpoena.”
What’s next for the court case over the president’s taxes? Attorneys for both sides must submit briefs explaining how they interpreted the previous ruling from the appellate court. Once the court has a chance to weigh those briefs, it could issue a final ruling as early as next Wednesday, which would mean there can be no further delay in handing over the information to the grand jury, which has been impaneled to determine if the president and his company, the Trump Organization, have committed insurance and tax fraud.