"Key player" Ivanka Trump tried to dodge court-appointed financial monitor. It didn’t work

Ivanka is currently the only defendant in the NY AG lawsuit who attempted to negotiate a better deal on her own

Published November 21, 2022 1:40PM (EST)

Ivanka Trump (MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)
Ivanka Trump (MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Private letters from Ivanka Trump's attorneys revealed that she tried to dodge having a court-appointed monitor track her finances. In the communications, Ivanka Trump's attorneys attempted to exclude only her from a New York state judge's order that oversees the Trump family's transactions, an unnamed source told the Daily Beast

New York prosecutors have already expressed concern that the Trump Organization and its executives may try to silently move around assets to avoid accountability, the source added. 

Justice Arthur Engoron on Thursday gave the Trump Organization a two-week deadline to hand over "a full and accurate description of the corporate structure" to retired federal judge Barbara Jones so that she may review "all financial disclosures to any persons or entities" by the company.

He also ordered them to notify the judge 30 days before shifting any financial assets so that they cannot escape New York Attorney General Letitia James' $250 million lawsuit. 

James' three-year investigation into the Trump Organization and family's tax write-offs culminated in a September lawsuit filed against former President Donald Trump, as well as his children Donald Jr., Ivanka, and Eric Trump.

Ivanka Trump tried to give a last-minute plea to Engoron, but he did not change the final order which makes it clear that she will not receive preferential treatment and must abide by the same rules. She is currently the only defendant in the lawsuit who attempted to negotiate a better deal on her own, according to the Daily Beast. 

While Ivanka Trump has not been mentioned in the recent court hearings, she is still listed as a defendant in the lawsuit due to her involvement in the company for years. Reid Figel, Ivanka's attorney on the suit, did not respond to questions on Friday in Washington, D.C.

Ivanka Trump has tried to back out of the political arena since the Jan. 6 Capitol attack led by her father's supporters. She was also missing from her father's 2024 presidential campaign last Tuesday, and in a statement to Fox News, said "I love my father very much" but "I do not plan to be involved in politics."

However, Ivanka Trump's exit from public politics hasn't stopped James from seeking to hold her accountable for her role as a company executive a decade ago. 

When Ivanka Trump refused to speak with investigators in January, James publicly filed court papers that documented her role in lying about Trump Organization properties' market values for years. The Attorney General's office cited Ivanka Trump as a "key player in many of the transactions" listed in the lawsuit, as she allegedly used falsified documents to complete business deals. 

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Investigators also allege that she is "responsible for securing loan terms" from Deutsche Bank relying on fake property valuations for a company golf course in Doral, Florida. They also claim she "played similar roles" in obtaining loans for projects in Chicago and Washington, D.C.

Ivanka Trump's attorneys are also relying on the argument that she hasn't been involved in the Trump Organization in any official capacity since joining the former president in the White House. 

"Ms. Trump has had no involvement for more than five years… Ms. Trump has had no role as an officer, director, or employee of the Trump Organization or any of its affiliates since at least January 2017," her lawyers said in an appeal filed Nov. 7 while the company tried to block the appointment of a court monitor. 

Ivanka Trump's lawyers also tried to argue that Judge Engoron never specifically named her in court when he ordered the monitor. "NY AG never intended to impose an injunction against Ms. Trump," they wrote.

The Attorney General's office did not address Ivanka Trump's defense, and prosecutors continued to support the use of a court monitor moving forward. The proceedings are scheduled to resume on Tuesday as investigators and Trump Organization lawyers discuss the lawsuit, which might go on trial next year. 

By Samaa Khullar

Samaa Khullar is a former news fellow at Salon with a background in Middle Eastern history and politics. She is a graduate of New York University's Arthur L. Carter Journalism institute and is pursuing investigative reporting.

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Aggregate Arthur Engoron Donald Trump Ivanka Trump Letitia James Politics Trump Organization