A federal appeals court in New York rejected a bid from President Trump to avoid having eight years of his tax returns handed over to prosecutors.
The unanimous decision from the three-judge panel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit is the latest loss for the president, who has sought to stop Trump's longtime accounting firm from complying with subpoenas for the financial records. The ruling says financial records can be handed over by Mazars USA.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance sought the president’s tax returns from 2011 and beyond along with other financial records as part of state prosecutors’ investigation into hush-money payments made to two women who claim to have had affairs with Trump in the early 2000s.
“The only question before us is whether a state may lawfully demand production by a third party of the president’s personal financial records for use in a grand jury investigation while the president is in office,” the 2nd Circuit said in its ruling. “With the benefit of the district court’s well-articulated opinion, we hold that any presidential immunity from state criminal process does not bar the enforcement of such a subpoena.”
The ruling is likely to be appealed, setting up a showdown before the Supreme Court.
Trump's lawyers had argued he is immune not only from prosecution while in the White House, but also from being investigated by state prosecutors.