A leading corruption prosecutor has been appointed to investigate Donald Trump and his administration by the state of New York.
Eric Schneiderman, the state’s attorney general and an outspoken critic of the Republican president, has brought in Howard Master to work on ongoing and future cases relating to Mr Trump and his team.
Mr Master previously worked under the Manhattan US Attorney and is considered one of the top corruption prosecutors in the US.
He successfully prosecuted Sheldon Silver, a former speaker of the New York state assembly, for fraud, extortion and money laundering in 2015.
His appointment is designed to bolster Mr Schneiderman’s department at a time when the New York attorney is investigating a number of options for using the legal system to oppose Mr Trump.
Mr Master “will be working on a wide range of civil and criminal investigations and enforcement matters, including public corruption, complex civil litigation”, including potential lawsuits against the President," said Eric Soufer, a spokesman for Mr Schneiderman.
In 2013, Mr Schneiderman brought a lawsuit against Mr Trump over fraud claims relating to his property development training company, Trump University.
It was alleged the businessman had conned a number of students out of tens of thousands of dollars by not delivering the promised standard of education. Mr Trump eventually agreed to settle the dispute out of court, paying $25 million (£20 million) to end the case.
Last week Mr Schneiderman’ s department joined a case, launched by Washington state, against Mr Trump’s revised executive order banning immigration from six mainly-Muslim countries for 90 days.
The controversial orders Donald Trump has already issued
The controversial orders Donald Trump has already issued
1/9 Trump and the media
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer takes questions during the daily press briefing
2/9 Trump and the Trans-Pacific Partnership
Union leaders applaud US President Donald Trump for signing an executive order withdrawing the US from the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations during a meeting in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington DC. Mr Trump issued a presidential memorandum in January announcing that the US would withdraw from the trade deal
3/9 Trump and the Mexico wall
A US Border Patrol vehicle sits waiting for illegal immigrants at a fence opening near the US-Mexico border near McAllen, Texas. The number of incoming immigrants has surged ahead of the upcoming Presidential inauguration of Donald Trump, who has pledged to build a wall along the US-Mexico border. A signature campaign promise, Mr Trump outlined his intention to build a border wall on the US-Mexico border days after taking office
4/9 Trump and abortion
US President Donald Trump signs an executive order as Chief of Staff Reince Priebus looks on in the Oval Office of the White House. Mr Trump reinstated a ban on American financial aide being granted to non-governmental organizations that provide abortion counseling, provide abortion referrals, or advocate for abortion access outside of the United States
5/9 Trump and the Dakota Access pipeline
Opponents of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines hold a rally as they protest US President Donald Trump's executive orders advancing their construction, at Columbus Circle in New York. US President Donald Trump signed executive orders reviving the construction of two controversial oil pipelines, but said the projects would be subject to renegotiation
6/9 Trump and 'Obamacare'
Nancy Pelosi who is the minority leader of the House of Representatives speaks beside House Democrats at an event to protect the Affordable Care Act in Los Angeles, California. US President Donald Trump's effort to make good on his campaign promise to repeal and replace the healthcare law failed when Republicans failed to get enough votes. Mr Trump has promised to revisit the matter
7/9 Donald Trump and 'sanctuary cities'
US President Donald Trump signed an executive order in January threatening to pull funding for so-called "sanctuary cities" if they do not comply with federal immigration law
8/9 Trump and the travel ban
US President Donald Trump has attempted twice to restrict travel into the United States from several predominantly Muslim countries. The first attempt, in February, was met with swift opposition from protesters who flocked to airports around the country. That travel ban was later blocked by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The second ban was blocked by a federal judge a day before it was scheduled to be implemented in mid-March
SANDY HUFFAKER/AFP/Getty Images
9/9 Trump and climate change
US President Donald Trump sought to dismantle several of his predecessor's actions on climate change in March. His order instructed the Environmental Protection Agency to reevaluate the Clean Power Plan, which would cap power plant emissions
“The Trump administration’s continued intent to discriminate against Muslims is clear and it undermines New York’s families, institutions and economy”, Mr Schneiderman said at the time.
The New York attorney general is also said to be investigating whether to pursue litigation relating to allegations the US President is breaching the US Constitution by continuing to receive money from foreign governments via his hotels and properties, which are often used by foreign state organisations for functions or office space.
Article 1, Section 9 of the US Constitution says no holder of public office can “without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state”.
A number of legal experts have said Mr Trump is acting unconstitutionally in continuing to receive money from foreign states. His lawyers say they do not believe he has breached the Constitution.Reuse content