Firm That Appraised Trump Properties Held in Contempt

Cushman & Wakefield to incur $10K fine every day it doesn't comply with subpoenas
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 6, 2022 12:15 PM CDT
Firm That Appraised Trump Properties Held in Contempt
Pedestrians and a food delivery man are seen outside the Trump building at 40 Wall Street, in New York's Financial District, March 23, 2021.   (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)

Donald Trump is no longer in contempt of a New York court, but now a real estate firm with a connection to him is. The New York Times reports Cushman & Wakefield—which numbers among the world's biggest real estate firms—was on Tuesday held in contempt of court by State Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron. The firm appraised a number of Trump properties that sit at the heart of the New York attorney general’s investigation into whether Trump intentionally misvalued his assets. Engoron said the firm did not comply with subpoenas from the state AG's office and issued a $10,000 daily fine that kicks in Thursday and will accrue until the firm provides the requested documents.

A rep for the firm countered, saying the company had incurred "great expense and effort" and gone to "extreme lengths" to comply, reportedly handing over 650 appraisals since February. The Wall Street Journal reports the AG's office has highlighted three properties appraised by Cushman & Wakefield as key to its investigation: Seven Springs Estate in Westchester County, the Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles, and 40 Wall Street. The firm plans to appeal Engoron's ruling.

The Times reports the move fits into a key piece of the timeline of state AG Letitia James' investigation: Trump, his namesake son, and daughter Ivanka will next week answer questions under oath; in subsequent weeks, James' office will make the determination as to whether they will sue Trump, the Trump Organization, or both for allegedly pumping up the value of Trump properties on financial statements for more than a decade. (More Donald Trump stories.)

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