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Jim Jordan demands NY AG hand over documents related to former DOJ official at heart of NY v. Trump

Republican House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan sent a letter to New York Attorney General Letitia James demanding her office turn over documents related to former Department of Justice official Matthew Colangelo, who now serves as lead prosector for the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office in the NY v. Trump case. 

“Mr. Colangelo’s recent employment history demonstrates his obsession with investigating a person rather than prosecuting a crime,” Jordan wrote in his letter to James on Wednesday. 

“At the New York Attorney General’s Office, Mr. Colangelo – who, for some time, held the title of Chief Counsel for Federal Initiatives – ran investigations into President Trump, leading ‘a wave of state litigation against Trump administration policies,'” Jordan continued. “On January 20, 2021, the first day of the Biden Administration, Mr. Colangelo began serving as the Acting Associate Attorney General – the number three official at the Justice Department. Upon the confirmation of Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta, Mr. Colangelo then served as the Principal Deputy Associate Attorney General.”

But Colangelo left his high position in the DOJ to join the New York District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s investigation of Trump months before the indictment of the former president.

“In December 2022, District Attorney Bragg ‘beefed up [his] office’ by hiring Mr. Colangelo to fill the void left by the departure of politicized line prosecutors Mark Pomerantz and Carey Dunne. District Attorney Bragg hired Mr. Colangelo to ‘jump-start’ his office’s investigation of President Trump, reportedly due to Mr. Colangelo’s ‘history of taking on Donald J. Trump and his family business.’ Mr. Colangelo is now a lead prosecutor in President Trump’s trial,” Jordan continued. 

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Prosecutor Matthew Colangelo

Prosecutor Matthew Colangelo speaks in DOJ video. (Department of Justice/YouTube)

Colangelo has a lengthy resume in government, working in a variety of legal roles that date to the Obama administration, Fox News Digital previously reported. He most recently served nearly two years in Biden’s DOJ, including as acting associate attorney general and overseeing the Antitrust, Civil, Civil Rights, Environment and Natural Resources, and Tax Divisions.

TRUMP PROSECUTOR QUIT TOP DOJ POST FOR LOWLY NY JOB IN LIKELY BID TO ‘GET’ FORMER PRESIDENT, EXPERT SAYS

Former President Trump walks to speak to the press at the end of the day during his trial at Manhattan Criminal Court on May 7, 2024.

EX-TOP BIDEN DOJ OFFICIAL NOW PROSECUTING TRUMP WAS ONCE PAID BY DNC FOR ‘POLITICAL CONSULTING’

Colangelo has also previously prosecuted cases involving Trump. 

Colangelo assisted a case in 2018 that dissolved Trump’s former NY-based charity, the Donald J. Trump Foundation, after prosecutors alleged that it had illegally coordinated with Trump’s 2016 campaign. The charity was dissolved after a judge found that Trump had “breached his fiduciary duty.”

Letitia James

New York Attorney General Letitia James speaks during a news conference. (AP Photo/Brittainy Newman, File)

That same year, Colangelo worked as lead prosecutor in a case involving the Trump administration’s push to include a citizenship question in the 2020 census. The Justice Department ultimately decided to print the 2020 Census without the citizenship question due to lengthy court battles that included having the Supreme Court weigh in that the question could not be added for the time being. 

Experts who previously spoke to Fox News Digital described Colangelo’s career move from a top DOJ position to a district attorney’s office as “very odd.”

NY V. TRUMP: HOUSE JUDICIARY INVESTIGATES BRAGG PROSECUTOR WHO HELD SENIOR ROLE IN BIDEN DOJ

“It’s very odd. It’s usually the other way around…. And frankly, that sounds to me like somebody who thought, ‘Ah, here’s an opportunity to go and get Donald Trump,'” Hans von Spakovsky, an attorney and former member of the Federal Election Commission, told Fox News Digital in a phone interview last month, ahead of the trial kicking off in earnest. 

Trump is no fan of Colangelo’s, according to public remarks. He has slammed the attorney as a “radical left [prosecutor] who was put into the state working for Letitia James and was then put into the District Attorney’s office to run the trial against Trump.” The comment came before the presiding judge in NY v. Trump, Juan Merchan, imposed a gag order that prevents Trump from speaking publicly about witnesses or the prosecution team. 

Department of Justice

The Department of Justice in Washington, D.C. (iStock)

“District Attorney Bragg’s politicized prosecution of President Trump has serious consequences for federal interests,” Jordan continued in his letter Wednesday to James. “The fact that a former senior Biden Justice Department official – whose previous employment consisted of leading ‘a wave of state litigation against Trump administration policies’ – is now leading the prosecution of President Biden’s chief political rival only adds to the perception that the Biden Justice Department is politicized and weaponized.”

Jim Jordan

Chairman Jim Jordan listens as Attorney General Merrick Garland appears before the House Judiciary Committee, Sept. 20, 2023, on Capitol Hill. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

BRAGG ‘ALLOWED POLITICAL MOTIVATIONS’ TO ‘INFECT’ PROSECUTION OF TRUMP, HOUSE JUDICIARY GOP SAYS

The NY v. Trump case focuses on the prosecution team working to prove Trump falsified business records 34 times to conceal a $130,000 payment to former pornography star Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 election to conceal her claims of an affair with Trump. 

Former US president and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump leaves Trump Tower

Former President Trump leaves Trump Tower to attend his trial in New York, on April 22, 2024. (Charly Triballeau/AFP via Getty Images)

Trump has pleaded not guilty in the case and has maintained his innocence.

TRUMP TRIAL: FORMER PRESIDENT ‘INNOCENT,’ DEFENSE SAYS AS DA ALLEGES ‘CRIMINAL CONSPIRACY’

Former Trump attorney Michael Cohen, who is considered the prosecution team’s star witness, has delivered ongoing testimony this week, including describing that he used his personal funds to pay Daniels in 2016 through a home equity line of credit. Cohen testified he did this because Trump told him to “handle it” as the story could be damaging to the campaign. 

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Cohen said he was “reimbursed $420,000” for the payment, a sum he said was “grossed up” to prevent loss of funds to taxes, and argued that Trump was aware of the details of the payments. The checks themselves were described as a “retainer,” which Cohen said was a false description.

James’ office, as well as the Manhattan DA’s office, did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s requests for comment Thursday morning.


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