Federal prosecutors in New York this week issued a sweeping subpoena for documents from President Trump’s inaugural committee.
Prosecutors with the Southern District of New York are seeking records related to top donors, as well as vendors, contractors and committee bank accounts.
The committee raised a record $107 million, more than twice the amount raised by President Obama.
Investigators are reportedly probing who donated the money, how it was spent and what donors received in exchange for their contributions.
The inauguration committee chairman was Thomas J. Barrack Jr., the Trump ally who suggested Paul Manafort as a candidate for campaign manager.
A longtime friend of the president, he has already been interviewed by Robert Mueller in regards to the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and his dealings with the now-incarcerated Manafort.
“We have just received a subpoena for documents. While we are still reviewing the subpoena, it is our intention to cooperate with the inquiry,” a committee spokesperson said in a statement.
Prosecutors are looking into whether a pro-Trump Super PAC received illegal foreign donations.
Investigators are probing whether nations — including Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates — used straw donors to contribute money to the funds.
Foreign contributions to campaign and political actions committees are illegal under federal law.
Giving money in exchange for political favors could be illegal, and diverting funds from the committee, which was registered as a nonprofit, could also violate federal law.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the documents the government is demanding from the inaugural committee include:
“All documents related to the committee’s donors and vendors”
All records related to “benefits” provided to donors
Documents related to the financier Imaad Zuberi and his company Avenue Ventures LLC. (He is the only donor specifically named in the subpoena. The Daily Beast has previously reported on Zuberi’s connections to Michael Cohen.)
Documents related to donations “made by or on behalf of foreign nationals,” including communications about possible donations from foreign individuals
Documents related to “donations or payments made by donors directly to contractors and/or vendors.” (The Journal reports that there was some discussion on the inaugural committee about having donors pay vendors for the inauguration directly — which could violate disclosure laws.)
The New York Times reports that the subpoena also asks for documents about Stripe, a startup that processes credit card payments, for which Jared Kushner’s brother is an investor.
Meanwhile, CNN reports that the subpoena specifically names several different offenses that investigators are probing:
Conspiracy against the United States
Inaugural committee disclosure violations
“Violations of laws prohibiting contributions by foreign nations and contributions in the name of another person, also known as straw donors.”
Trump’s business, his campaign, his inaugural, his foundation and various aspects of his presidency are all under investigation.