Manhattan DA issues subpoena to Trump Org over hush money payments to Stormy Daniels: report

The Manhattan District Attorney’s (DA) Office on Thursday reportedly subpoenaed the Trump Organization for documents related to the nondisclosure payment meant to silence adult-film star Stormy Daniels amid the 2016 presidential campaign.

The New York Times, citing people briefed on the matter, reported that the office is investigating whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpMark Kelly clinches Democratic Senate nod in Arizona Trump camp considering White House South Lawn for convention speech: reports Longtime Rep. Lacy Clay defeated in Missouri Democratic primary MORE's family business violated the law in its business records about the payment.


State prosecutors are probing whether senior executives filed falsified business records related to the payment to Daniels. The people briefed on the matter told the Times that this action would represent a state crime. 

A spokeswoman for Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance declined to comment to the Times. The office declined a request for comment from The Hill. 

Marc L. Mukasey, an attorney for the Trump Organization, told the Times the subpoenas were being used as "weapons."

“It’s just harassment of the president, his family and his business, using subpoenas as weapons," he said. "We will respond as appropriate."

The office's investigation is revolving around Trump's former lawyer Michael CohenMichael Dean CohenOn The Money: Democratic leaders report 'some progress' in stimulus talks | Prosecutors hint at probe into 'possibly extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization' Prosecutors hint at probe into 'possibly extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization' Federal appeals court rejects Stormy Daniels libel case against Trump MORE's $130,000 nondisclosure payment to Daniels. Cohen pleaded guilty last year to violating campaign finance laws with hush-money payments to Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

The two alleged to have had affairs with the president. Trump has adamantly denied the accusations. 

In addition to the payment to Daniels, Cohen arranged for the publisher of the National Enquirer to pay McDougal for her story alleging an affair with the president. The company proceeded to never run the story after buying its rights. 

The Times noted that the Manhattan DA office also subpoenaed American Media Inc., the publisher of the National Enquirer. 

People briefed on the investigation told the Times that the office is probing how the Trump Organization handled reimbursing Cohen for the payment to Daniels. The probe is looking into whether the company incorrectly listed the the reimbursement as a legal expense. 

The subpoenas were issued just weeks after a federal judge announced that federal investigators' inquiry into campaign finance violations by Cohen was over. 

Cohen, who began his prison sentence in May, has said that he made the payments at the direction of the president. The Times noted that it is unclear if the new investigation would look into Trump's conduct.