Real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield held in contempt for not turning over Trump documents

A judge issued an interim stay in the case on Friday.

July 11, 2022, 8:23 AM

Real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield is being held in contempt of court for refusing to comply with subpoenas for information related to its business relationship with the Trump Organization, a judge in New York has ruled.

The subpoenas were issued by the New York Attorney General's Office as part of its civil investigation into how former President Donald Trump and his family business valued their holdings.

On Friday, however, the New York Supreme Court issued an interim stay under the condition that Cushman & Wakefield hand over the requested documents to the attorney general by Wednesday.

"We are pleased to have reached an agreement with the OAG that relates to an interim stay of the Contempt ruling," the company said in a statement. "Since the beginning of the New York Attorney General’s investigation in 2019, Cushman & Wakefield has endeavored to cooperate with the OAG’s investigation, responding to multiple document subpoenas and eight testimony subpoenas. We will continue to work to produce the documents requested by the OAG by Wednesday, July 13, in accordance with our agreement."

PHOTO: A sign marking the Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles, March 18, 2018.
A sign marking the Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles, March 18, 2018.
GC Images/Getty Images, FILE

Should the firm meet the conditions of the deal, the contempt order will be dissolved and no fines would be collected.

Judge Arthur Engoron had imposed a $10,000 daily fine starting Thursday for every day that the real estate giant did not comply with the subpoenas.

"Cushman & Wakefield's work for Donald Trump and the Trump Organization is clearly relevant to our investigation, and we're pleased that the court has recognized that and taken action to force Cushman to comply with our subpoenas," New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement. "No person or company, no matter how powerful, is above the law."

A Cushman & Wakefield spokesperson had said the company would appeal the decision -- an appeal that was heard Friday.

"The ruling to hold Cushman & Wakefield in contempt demonstrates a failure to understand the extreme lengths Cushman has gone to comply with the Court's order," the company spokesperson said. "We have gone to great expense and effort to quickly identify, collect, review and produce the massive set of documents requested by the OAG, and we have now produced over hundreds of thousands of pages of documents and over 650 appraisals since the last subpoena was issued in February 2022."

PHOTO: Cushman and Wakefield logo adorns the office complex in Warsaw, Poland, Aug. 23, 2020.
Cushman and Wakefield logo adorns the office complex in Warsaw, Poland, Aug. 23, 2020.
NurPhoto via Getty Images, FILE

"Cushman disagrees with any suggestion that the firm has not exercised diligence and good faith in complying with the Court's order, and we will be appealing this decision," the spokesperson said.

The attorney general's office filed a motion to compel the company to comply with subpoenas in early April, and the motion was granted the same month.

Cushman & Wakefield provided real estate services for Trump Organization properties for many years, including appraisals and brokerage services for properties that have been subject of the AG's probe.

The company has refused to comply with subpoenas for information related to its appraisals of three Trump-owned properties -- 40 Wall Street in Manhattan, Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles, and the Seven Springs estate in Westchester, New York -- as well as information about Cushman's larger business relationship with the Trump Organization, according to court documents.

Related Topics

ABC News Live

ABC News Live

24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events