The Trump administration has filed lawsuits against Germany’s Deutsche Bank and Capital One in the US in an attempt to stop the two lenders from handing over financial records to the US House of Representatives.
The filing says the subpoenas “have no legitimate or lawful purpose” and “were issued to harass President Donald J. Trump, to rummage through every aspect of his personal finances, his businesses, and the private information of the president and his family”.
The House Intelligence and Financial Services Committees issued subpoenas to Deutsche Bank, which is one of the Trump Organisation’s major lenders, and a number of other financial institutions earlier this month. The Congressional committees want documents and materials relating to the banks’ longstanding relationship with Trump and his family handed over as part of a further probe into the Trump family’s dealings with foreign financial lenders.
Deutsche Bank’s spokeswoman, Kerrie McHugh, made clear that the bank remains “committed to providing appropriate information to all authorised investigations.”
Trump has repeatedly called the subpoenas harassment and made clear that his personal financial affairs should be off limits to the House intelligence and Financial Services committees. Trump has also publicly rebuked his accountants and the Democratic chairman of the House Oversight Committee, Elijah Cummings, for issuing a subpoena to his accounting firm.
The House Ways and Means Committee is also looking to issue a subpoena for Trump’s tax records, which the White House has refused to hand over, having already missed two consecutive deadlines.
Democratic Congress members Maxine Waters from California, who chairs the Financial Services Committee, and Intelligence Committee chair, Adam Schiff, who is also from California, argued on that Trump’s lawsuits are an attempt to put off “meaningful accountability for as long as possible.”
The Deutsche Bank subpoena is of particular interest as the Congress seeks to establish whether Trump has, on occasion, inflated his wealth to secure substantial lines of credit, an assertion that has been made by his former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen.
Trump has been banking with Deutsche since the 1990s when he went through a series of defaults and bankruptcies.