Friday, June 14, 2024

GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz Calls for Subpoenaing Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg and His Deputy; New Docs Show Bragg Spent $1M On Attorneys to Address House Probe of Trump Case Amid City Budget Cuts

Jeenah Moon/Pool Photo via AP
GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz calls for subpoenaing Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg and his deputy:
Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz moved Thursday to subpoena Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg to appear before the House, saying lawmakers can’t trust the prosecutors to show up voluntarily.
Mr. Gaetz faulted his own party’s leadership for failing to subpoena President Biden’s son, Hunter, for live testimony, and fears Mr. Bragg and his assistant district attorney, Matthew Colangelo, won’t appear as promised on July 12 to discuss their prosecution of former President Donald Trump.
“I worry we’re going about the same kind of process here. We may end up there in July, right after sentencing, with an empty Alvin Bragg nameplate and an empty Matthew Colangelo nameplate,” Mr. Gaetz, of Florida, said at a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Mr. Bragg’s decision to go after Mr. Trump. “And then we’ll start the process again with letters, and subpoenas and accommodation, and I’ve just grown tired of it.”
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan pushed back on Mr. Gaetz, saying the New York officials guaranteed they’ll appear, and the panel could subpoena them if they don’t show up. He called a recess while he worked with staff to deal with Mr. Gaetz’s motion.
Democrats said they didn’t understand the motion.
“It’s a little absurd because Mr. Bragg and Mr. Colangelo have already agreed to appear before the committee on July 12; we have a letter to that effect,” Rep. Jerry Nadler, New York Democrat, said. “There no point in requiring them to do what they said they’re already going to do.”
Mr. Jordan called a recess while he worked with staff to deal with the request.
After the break, Mr. Gaetz agreed to withdraw his motion based on representations from the chairman and Democrats.
Mr. Trump was convicted of 34 felony counts of falsifying business records on May 30. He faces sentencing on July 11.
During the six-week trial, prosecutors said Mr. Trump used his lawyer Michael Cohen to pay hush money to porn star Stormy Daniels near the 2016 election and then criminally concealed the payments through a series of mis-logged checks to Mr. Cohen. Defense attorneys said Mr. Trump did nothing wrong and thought he was paying legal fees to Mr. Cohen. --->READ MORE HERE
New docs show Bragg spent $1M on attorneys to address House probe of Trump case amid city budget cuts:
Findings from more than 100 pages of documents gleaned through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request revealed that the prosecutor in NY v. Trump spent $1 million to respond to congressional oversight of his prosecution at a time New York City officials were demanding across-the-board budget cuts.
Documents procured through litigation by the Oversight Project, a good-government transparency arm of the Heritage Foundation, showed Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office sent an April 2023 interoffice memo announcing a $1 million appropriation for outside counsel.
According to the memo, the funds came from a 2019 settlement with a financial institution that was accused of illegally transacting with nations subject to U.S. sanctions.
"Due to this unanticipated need, $1,000,000 will be made available for this matter from the DANY Deficit Project under the UniCredit subfund," the memo read.
The document also referenced an attached "engagement letter" signed with the high-powered Los Angeles-based Gibson Dunn law firm, and the packet also included an approved waiver from the New York City Conflict of Interest Board to permit a Bragg counsel to participate in the case despite a familial connection to a Gibson Dunn attorney.
Another piece of the document tranche said Bragg indicated it would be in the best interests of the office to hire outside counsel to respond to congressional inquiry from Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, and others at the time.
Of five law firms that were apparently solicited, only Gibson Dunn was immediately available, according to the findings.
The Manhattan District Attorney's Office has approved the use of funds received as part of the 2019 UniCredit settlement to be used toward retaining outside counsel tied to a congressional inquiry into the investigation and prosecution of a confidential investigation division case.
The email then references an attached engagement letter signed by Bragg with Gibson Dunn and documents referenced Bragg's office's awareness of the trio of House committees looking into his investigation of former President Trump. --->READ MORE HERE
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