Donald Trump is no longer in contempt of court, a New York judge ruled Wednesday.
Judge Arthur Engoron, who declared the former president in contempt on April 25 for being slow to respond to a civil subpoena issued by New York’s attorney general, said Trump has now met conditions required to lift the sanction following a protracted legal battle.
The judge had ordered Trump to pay $10,000 US a day until he complied with Letitia James’ subpoena, which was issued in December.
Trump accumulated $110,000 in fines before Engoron stopped them from accruing, to allow more time to comply with the subpoena. He has paid the fines, which will remain in escrow while he appeals the original contempt filing.
He and two of his children, Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump, are expected to testify under oath in James’s investigation starting on July 15, after two state courts refused to block their depositions.
“Although we are pleased that the court has lifted the contempt finding, we maintain that it was wholly unwarranted and improper in the first place,” Trump lawyer Alina Habba said. “We will push ahead with our appeal to secure justice for our client.”
A message seeking comment was left with James’ office.
James, a Democrat, has spent more than three years investigating the Trump Organization, which manages hotels, golf courses and other real estate around the world.
She said in January that her civil probe had uncovered “significant” new evidence that the company had overstated asset values to obtain favourable loan terms, and understated those values to get tax breaks.
Trump, a Republican, has called James’ probe a politically motivated witch hunt.