Lawsuit Seeks Records from Investigation into Potential Trump Campaign-Finance Violations

Former Trump attorney Michael Cohen

This week, American Oversight filed a lawsuit against the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation for records related to the investigation into President Donald Trump’s potential campaign finance violations.

The investigation, conducted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York and the FBI’s New York field office, resulted in a guilty plea by now-famous Trump “fixer” Michael Cohen, who assisted in making hush-money payments to two women who claimed to have had affairs with Trump.

In July, a court filing revealed that the investigation had been closed, but the Justice Department has not provided any additional details about its decision to close the investigation into potential crimes committed by the president. According to the Washington Post, “The conclusion of the campaign finance investigation this summer surprised some former federal prosecutors and legal experts, who noted that other participants in the alleged scheme were granted immunity or non-prosecution agreements, which often signal that the case is focused on additional targets.”

American Oversight filed a Freedom of Information request in late July for records of witness interviews or statements, such as transcripts or recordings, from the FBI’s investigation into Trump, the Trump Organization and Cohen. Several notable Trump associates, including former Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg, former White House communications director and longtime Trump aide Hope Hicks, as well as Trump’s former security chief, Keith Schiller, were reportedly interviewed throughout the now-closed investigation. 

Citing the immense public interest in criminal activity in the Trump campaign, and the ongoing congressional investigation into the extent of Trump’s involvement in the payments, American Oversight’s suit seeks the release of documents related to those interviews and comes after the Justice Department failed to provide records in response to the July FOIA request. The full complaint is below.

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