Prosecutors agree to pause in subpoena for Trump tax returns

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US President Donald Trump disembarks after arriving on Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, September 26, 2019, after returning from New York.

Saul Loeb| AFP | Getty Images

The Manhattan District Attorney’s office told a federal judge it has struck a deal with President Donald Trump’s lawyers to press pause on a subpoena for his tax returns.

In a letter to Judge Victor Marrero, counsel for DA Cyrus Vance Jr. wrote that “the parties have reached a temporary agreement” to “forbear enforcement” of the subpoena to produce years of Trump’s financial documents.

They will hold off trying to enforce the subpoena until Oct. 7 at 1 p.m. ET — or until two business days after the judge rules on whether it should be permanently barred or whether it can be enforced over Trump’s objection.

In the meantime, Trump’s accounting firm, Mazars USA, will start “gathering and preparing all documents responsive to the subpoena,” the letter to Marrero says. The judge signed the outline of the agreement, filed in lower Manhattan federal court Thursday.

A day earlier, Marrero had temporarily blocked enforcement of a grand jury subpoena demanding Trump’s personal and corporate income tax returns from Mazars.

Marrero said in a hearing Wednesday that it won’t take him “weeks or months” to decide whether the subpoena should be allowed.

Trump’s attorneys argue that the subpoena — issued in August as part of Vance’s investigation into Trump’s finances — could not legally be enforced against a sitting U.S. president. The president’s lawyers sued to block the subpoena earlier this month.

Vance’s probe includes looking at potential violations in how a hush-money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels was accounted for in business records by the Trump Organization.

Daniels, who says she had sex with Trump once in the mid-2000s, was paid $130,000 in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election by Trump’s then-personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, to keep her quiet about her allegation. Vance is also investigating a $150,000 hush-money payment to Playboy model Karen McDougal, which former National Enquirer publisher American Media Inc. made months before the 2016 election.

Trump has denied having sex with either Daniels or McDougal.