- The Manhattan district attorney’s office is amping up its investigation into the Trump Organization.
- The Daily Beast reported that the office is now looking into Donald Trump Jr. too.
- Trump Jr. and his brother Eric ran the family business while their father was president.
- Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.
The Daily Beast reported that the investigation had expanded and that investigators had become interested in the activities of Trump Jr. and Allen Weisselberg, the Trump Organization’s chief financial officer.
The Daily Beast didn’t specify what about Trump Jr. and Weisselberg the investigators were interested in, but District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. has been opaque about the investigation from the get-go.
Court filings have indicated that his office is looking into “extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization,” The Associated Press reported in November.
A representative for the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office declined to confirm The Daily Beast’s reporting on Trump Jr. and Weisselberg. The Trump Organization has not responded to Insider’s request for comment.
Vance won a major court battle earlier this week when the US Supreme Court rejected Donald Trump’s attempts to shield his tax returns from his office, which has been seeking them for years.
In another hint that the investigation is heating up, Vance’s team recently brought on a top prosecutor, Mark Pomerantz, whose specialty is white-collar and organized crime.
When Trump was elected president in 2016, it was announced that his two eldest sons, Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, would continue to lead the family business – rebuffing calls for Trump to divest himself of the business or put his assets in a blind trust.
To avoid conflicts of interest, the company promised not to enter any new overseas deals and to undertake new domestic projects only with the approval of a company ethics advisor, Reuters reported at the time.
But ethics experts told Reuters that the arrangement did not go far enough to separate the president from his business, because his sons were still involved.
While the Trump Organization didn’t enter into any new foreign business deals during Trump’s four years in office, it continued other overseas projects.
Illustrating the kind of problems this presented was Trump Jr.’s trip to India in 2018 to tour Trump-branded properties. He had planned to give a foreign-policy speech, but it was abruptly canceled after ethics watchdogs and Democratic lawmakers questioned why the president’s son would be discussing US foreign policy during a business trip as a private citizen, The Guardian reported.