Former President Donald Trump sued New York Attorney General Letitia James on Wednesday, accusing her of waging a “crusade” against him and his “great and upstanding businesses which have done nothing wrong.”
The suit, filed in Florida’s Fifteenth Judicial Circuit Court, comes amid James’ own lawsuit alleging decades of fraud by the former president and his family business. The attorney general has asked a court to appoint a watchdog or monitor to review a Trump trust that holds ownership of the Trump Organization as her case moves forward.
Trump has vehemently objected to that demand, calling it a politically motivated overreach and arguing she has no jurisdiction over the matter as the trust is “governed by Florida law.” The former president’s lawyers said James had engaged in a “war of intimidation and harassment” meant to “steal, destroy or control all things Trump.”
“Crooked and highly partisan James now thinks it is the business of the State of New York to go after my revocable trust and pry into my private estate plan only to look for ways to recklessly injure me, my family, my businesses, and my tens of millions of supporters,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social media platform. “If I were not elected President of the United States, and now leading in the polls by substantial margins against both Democrats and Republicans, this would not be happening.”
New York State Attorney General Letitia James speaks during the New York State Democratic Convention on Feb. 17, 2022, in New York.
In a statement Wednesday, James’ office pointed to other Trump lawsuits that have been dismissed in recent months, vowing the attorney general would continue her work.
“We sued Donald Trump because he committed extensive financial fraud,” her office told Axios. “That fact hasn’t changed, and neither will our resolve to ensure that no matter how powerful or political one might be, no one is above the law.”
James filed a civil lawsuit against Trump, three of his adult children and the Trump Organization in September, accusing the former president of “staggering” levels of fraud. The attorney general said in the suit Trump and his family business lied to lenders and insurance companies, overvaluing his assets by billions of dollars to get favorable loans.
James’ office hopes to see Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka and Eric Trump barred from conducting business in the state of New York, as well as making them pay about $250 million in restitution. Her office does not have the authority to file criminal charges, but has referred the case to federal prosecutors in Manhattan.
“Donald Trump falsely inflated his net worth by billions of dollars to unjustly enrich himself and to cheat the system, thereby cheating all of us,” the attorney general said at the time.