Donald Trump sued Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance on Thursday, questioning the constitutionality of subpoenas issued by the state prosecutor, and which a source said sought the president’s tax returns, Reuters reports.
A copy of the complaint filed with the U.S. District Court in Manhattan was not immediately available in online records.
Trump filed his lawsuit three days after the New York Times said Vance’s office had subpoenaed his longtime accounting firm Mazars for eight years of personal and corporate tax returns.
The president sued over Vance’s subpoenas for tax returns and tax-related information, according to a person familiar with the matter who was not authorised to discuss the subpoenas’ contents.
Trump has refused to disclose his tax returns, after promising during his 2016 White House run that he would.
Danny Frost, a spokesman for Vance, said the district attorney has received and will respond to the complaint. “We will have no further comment as this process unfolds in court,” Frost said.
According to the Times, Vance issued his subpoenas soon after opening a criminal probe into what role Trump and his family business, the Trump Organization, played in hush-money payments prior to the 2016 election.
These include $130,000 that Michael Cohen, the president’s now-imprisoned former lawyer, paid to Stormy Daniels, a pornographic film actress whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, and who said she had a sexual relationship with Trump in 2006.
Trump has denied having an affair with Daniels. The Times said Vance’s office is examining whether the Trump Organization falsely accounted for the reimbursements as a legal expense.
Cohen is serving a three-year prison term for campaign finance violations, including through the hush money payments, as well as tax evasion and lying to the U.S. Congress.
Trump, a Republican, is separately trying to block Deutsche Bank AG (DBKGn.DE) from handing over financial records, which include tax returns, subpoenaed by two committees of the Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives.
The federal appeals court in Manhattan heard arguments in that case on Aug. 23. It has yet to rule.
Vance, a Democrat and longtime Trump critic, is also pursuing a criminal mortgage fraud case against Paul Manafort, a former Trump campaign chairman.
Manafort has sought a dismissal, saying he was already convicted on similar federal charges and trying him again would amount to double jeopardy.
Mazars was also named as a defendant in Trump’s lawsuit against Vance. It did not immediately respond to a request for comment.Punch