A New York state judge on Wednesday ordered President Trump’s son Eric to answer questions under oath before the election in a fraud investigation into his family’s real estate business.
Last week, Eric Trump’s lawyers said he was willing to be interviewed — but would only do so after the presidential election because he did not want his deposition to be used “for political purposes.”
But on Wednesday, a state judge in Manhattan, Arthur F. Engoron, ruled that Mr. Trump had to sit for a deposition no later than Oct. 7. Justice Engoron said he found Mr. Trump’s arguments that a delay was necessary “unpersuasive.”
The attorney general, Letitia James, has been conducting a civil investigation into whether President Trump and the Trump Organization committed fraud by overstating assets to get loans and tax benefits.
Ms. James’s office had asked the judge to order Eric Trump, the executive vice president of his father’s business, to answer questions under oath, court papers show.
In July, Mr. Trump abruptly canceled an interview with the attorney general’s office, days before it was scheduled, and in August the Trump Organization told the office that the company and its lawyers would not comply with seven subpoenas related to the investigation.
Last week, Mr. Trump’s lawyers said in court papers he was now willing to be interviewed, but not until after the November election. They cited his “extreme travel schedule” and his determination “to avoid the use of his deposition attendance for political purposes,” the filing said.
The request to depose Eric Trump comes as President Trump faces legal actions on other fronts. The Manhattan district attorney’s office has suggested in court filings that it is investigating possible bank and insurance fraud by the president and the Trump Organization, and is fighting in federal court to obtain his tax returns.