Deutsche Bank subpoenaed to provide Trump accounts' data
Dec 06, 2017, 00:35
Special counsel Robert Mueller's office spent $3.2 million during the first few months of his investigation into Russian election interference and possible coordination with associates of President Donald Trump.
A USA official with knowledge of Mueller's probe said one reason for the subpoenas was to find out whether Deutsche Bank may have sold some of Trump's mortgage or other loans to Russian state development bank VEB or other Russian banks that now are under US and European Union sanctions.
It also prompted claims among Trump opponents that the President may have obstructed justice, after a tweet at the weekend appeared to confirm he knew at the time of Mr Flynn's sacking that he had lied.
Trump, his wife, daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner are understood to beclients of Deutsche Bank.
Many media outlets included the denial from Trump's attorney in their reports, but the idea of his bank being subpoenaed for his financial records makes for far juicier headlines.
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"Deutsche Bank's pattern of involvement in money laundering schemes with primarily Russian participation, its unconventional relationship with the president, and its repeated violations of USA banking laws all raise serious question about whether the bank's reported reviews of the trading scheme and Trump's financial ties to Russia were completely thorough", they wrote.
Holding such debt, particularly if some of it was or is coming due, could potentially give Russian banks some leverage over Trump, especially if they are state-owned, said a second US official familiar with Russian intelligence methods. "Over the years, I've looked at maybe doing a deal in Russian Federation, but I never did one". The Mueller investigation now wants the bank to detail any ties between those trades or other Russian financing as it seeks to identify anyone connected to Donald Trump, his family or advisers.
Deutsche Bank rejected demands in June by U.S. House Democrats to provide details of Trump's finances, citing privacy laws.
In 2012, his Trump International Hotel Hotel and Tower in Chicago was loaned up to $640m, according to a property filing.
Deutsche Bank is not the only Trump-related business interest that is attracting the attention of investigators. Russian Federation has denied USA intelligence agencies' conclusion that it meddled in the campaign and Trump has said there was no collusion with Moscow.
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Trump earlier said that "I never asked" former FBI Director James Comey "to stop investigating Flynn". Mueller has been looking into Russian interference in the 2016 USA presidential election since May.
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