New York state judge Arthur Engoron ruled in February that the trio must testify, rejecting a plea by the Trumps to quash subpoenas issued by James.
She suspects the Trump Organization fraudulently overstated the value of real estate properties when applying for bank loans, while understating them with the tax authorities in order to pay less in taxes.
The Trumps have denied any wrongdoing.
Last month, the former president paid a $110,000 fine for refusing to provide accounting and tax documents as part of the civil probe.
If James, a Democrat, finds any evidence of financial misconduct, she can sue the Trump Organization for damages but cannot file criminal charges.
James’s probe is one of several legal battles in which Trump is embroiled, threatening to complicate any bid for another run for the White House in 2024.
The Trump Organization is also under investigation by the Manhattan District Attorney for possible financial crimes and insurance fraud.
Last July, the Trump Organization and its long-serving finance chief, Allen Weisselberg, pleaded not guilty in a New York court to 15 felony fraud and tax evasion charges.
Weisselberg’s trial is due to begin this year.
Trump, 75, has so far kept Americans guessing about whether he intends to seek the Republican nomination again.
A New York court on Friday sentenced two sons of former Panamanian president Ricardo Martinelli to three years in prison on charges of corruption linked to the Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht.
The sentence against Luis Enrique and Ricardo Martinelli, which also includes a fine of $250,000, is well below the nine to 11 years prosecutors had asked for.
They were accused of having received $28 million in bribes from the disgraced construction group, of which $19 million had passed through US accounts.
The brothers pleaded guilty last December after being extradited from Guatemala to the United States.
Washington had demanded their extradition over accusations of involvement in operations by Odebrecht, which allegedly paid more than $700 million in bribes to Panamanian government officials to win contracts.
Panama is also demanding that the Martinelli brothers face charges there in another corruption scandal.
Their father, who served as president from 2009 to 2014, is himself accused in the Odebrecht case, but has announced his intention to run for president in 2024.
The Odebrecht scandal has hit a slew of leaders across Latin America, and former bosses of the Brazilian company have admitted in court to illegally distributing millions of dollars in bribes in exchange for public contracts.
US media outlets have reported officials are investigating a detailed “manifesto” posted online before the shooting, in which the suspect outlines his plans and racial motivations for the attack.
Quoting from the manifesto, the New York Times reported the suspect had been “inspired” by white supremacist acts of violence, including the massacre of 51 Muslims in Christchurch, New Zealand in March 2019.
A semi-automatic weapon used in Saturday’s shooting also had a racial epithet written on it as well as the number 14 — a reference to a white supremacist phrase — according to local daily The Buffalo News, citing a local official.
District Attorney Flynn said in the press conference that the shooter used an “assault weapon” — a term that can apply to types of rifles and shotguns in New York — but did not specify which kind.
Flynn’s office said in a tweet Saturday night that the suspect — identified as Payton Gendron of Conklin, New York — had been arraigned on a charge of first-degree murder, which carries a sentence of life without parole. He is being held without bail.
Asked during the earlier press conference if the shooter could face the death penalty at the federal level, the US attorney for the Western District of New York, Trini Ross, said: “All options are on the table as we go forward with the investigation.”
‘Day of Great Pain’
Byron Brown, the mayor of Buffalo — which is located in western New York State, along the US border with Canada — said the shooter “traveled hours from outside this community to perpetrate this crime.”
“This is a day of great pain for our community,” Brown said.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said US President Joe Biden had been briefed on the “horrific shooting.”
In a statement, Biden thanked police and first responders and denounced the attack.
“Any act of domestic terrorism, including an act perpetrated in the name of a repugnant white nationalist ideology, is antithetical to everything we stand for in America,” he said.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, the senior US senator from New York, said in a tweet: “We are standing with the people of Buffalo.”
The governor of New York, Kathy Hochul, described the killings as a “horrific white supremacist shooting” in a tweet that also praised the grocery store security guard as “a true hero.”
A spokesperson for streaming service Twitch confirmed to AFP that the shooter used the service to broadcast the attack.
“We have investigated and confirmed that we removed the stream less than two minutes after the violence started,” the spokesperson said, adding: “We are taking all appropriate action, including monitoring for any accounts rebroadcasting this content.”
Wave Of Gun Violence
The Buffalo shooting follows other recent instances of racially motivated mass killings in the United States.
In 2019, a white gunman traveled hours across the state of Texas and killed 23 people at a Walmart in El Paso, where the vast majority of the population is Hispanic.
Four years earlier, in Charleston, South Carolina, a white man opened fire in an African American church, killing nine.
In both instances, the men posted hate-filled manifestos online before their shooting rampages.
Despite recurring mass-casualty shootings and a nationwide wave of gun violence, multiple initiatives to reform gun regulations have failed in the US Congress, leaving states and local councils to enact their own restrictions.
The United States suffered 19,350 firearm homicides in 2020, up nearly 35 percent compared to 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in its latest data.
New York State’s second-in-command resigned Tuesday after surrendering to a federal corruption indictment over a scheme to funnel fraudulent donations to a prior campaign.
The five-count charge sheet said Lieutenant Governor Brian Benjamin took part in a scheme to obtain contributions from an unnamed Harlem real estate investor in exchange for a $50,000 state grant for a non-profit organization controlled by the investor.
Benjamin, a state senator at the time, was running in what would ultimately be an unsuccessful 2021 bid to become New York City’s comptroller.
“In so doing, Benjamin abused his authority as a New York State senator, engaging in a bribery scheme using public funds for his own corrupt purposes,” prosecutors said in the indictment.
The Harlem developer was arrested in November.
The indictment accuses Benjamin of telling “a series of lies and deceptions to cover up the scheme,” falsifying campaign donation forms and giving misleading information to New York City authorities as part of a background check to become lieutenant governor.
He is accused of bribery and honest services wire fraud and related conspiracy charges, as well as two counts of falsification of records.
Benjamin, 45, is the deputy to Kathy Hochul, who was elevated to the state’s governorship last year after Andrew Cuomo resigned amid allegations of sexual misconduct.
Hochul is not suspected of having known about the allegations involving Benjamin, whom she appointed soon after taking office.
“I have accepted Brian Benjamin’s resignation effective immediately. While the legal process plays out, it is clear to both of us that he cannot continue to serve as Lieutenant Governor,” Hochul said in a statement Tuesday evening.
“New Yorkers deserve absolute confidence in their government, and I will continue working every day to deliver for them.”
The lieutenant governor is expected to appear in court in Lower Manhattan later Tuesday.
The New York State Democratic Party did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
A 16-year-old girl was killed and two other teenagers injured by stray bullets in New York on Friday after a man who was arguing with someone opened fire in the street, police said.
New York Police Chief Keechant Sewell told reporters the young woman was returning from her high school in the Bronx, accompanied by another 16-year-old girl and a boy aged 17.
A man on foot in a crosswalk was arguing with someone on the opposite side of the street when he pulled out a gun and fired repeatedly, according to Sewell.
The first teenager was hit in the chest and the other two in the leg and buttocks. All three were taken to hospital, but the most seriously injured, who should have had “a bright future”, succumbed to her injuries, said the head of the NYPD.
The other two teenagers were hospitalized in stable condition.
There have been no arrests but police have CCTV footage and have promised that those responsible will be brought to justice.
It was the second time in a week that young people in New York have fallen victim to stray bullets.
On March 31, a 12-year-old boy was killed in Brooklyn while he was eating in a parked car. A 20-year-old woman was also injured in the same car.
New York’s new Democratic mayor, Eric Adams, a former police officer, was elected in late 2021 on a pledge to tackle crime and the spread of illegal guns in the city of nine million people, where crime has risen sharply since the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020.
In the first quarter of 2022 the number of shootings in New York increased from 260 to 296 compared to the same period of 2021, according to NYPD figures released on Wednesday.
Oil prices soared Thursday on tensions surrounding key producer Russia, while global equities mostly rose as markets digested monetary tightening moves by central banks.
The price of benchmark oil contract, Brent North Sea crude, jumped more than eight percent to race past $100 per barrel after Russia rejected a ruling from the UN’s top court to suspend its Ukraine offensive.
“Russia’s invasion is still dictating price action… given the country’s global importance in terms of supply,” Interactive Investor analyst Victoria Scholar told AFP.
The surge in oil prices has added to worries about inflation, prompting a warning Thursday from the OECD that fallout from the conflict could cut global economic growth by over one percentage point in the first year after the invasion.
Despite together only accounting for “about two percent” of the global economy, Russia and Ukraine’s importance as exporters of raw material, food and energy mean the conflict’s impact is likely to be felt beyond their borders, the OECD grouping of developed economies said.
“If sustained,” the impact would produce “a deep recession in Russia” and further increase global consumer price inflation by approximately 2.5 percentage points, it added.
The warning came as Russia’s finance ministry said it had carried out interest payments on two foreign bonds, avoiding default for now after it was hit by unprecedented Western sanctions.
Central banks were in focus again as the Bank of England (BoE) raised its main interest rate by a quarter point, following the US Federal Reserve’s decision to do the same the day before.
The hike, widely anticipated by analysts, was the BoE’s third straight rate rise as it battles decades-high UK inflation.
“The global economy faces elevated levels of inflation because of various factors, including from surging energy and commodity prices,” said Fawad Razaqzada, analyst at ThinkMarkets.
But US stocks extended a strong rally, with the Dow notching its third straight session of gains over one percent.
Higher oil prices usually weigh on the broader equity market, but stocks continued to benefit from positive momentum, analysts said.
Earlier, London finished 1.2 percent up but the German DAX was off 0.4 percent while Paris edged modestly into the green.
In Asia, Hong Kong’s main Hang Seng index closed with another massive gain, adding seven percent as investors pile back in after China’s pledge to support markets.
China’s top economic official has vowed measures to support beaten-down markets and indicated that a debilitating crackdown on the technology sector was nearing its end.
“The statement addressed so many issues on various fronts, which is really rare,” said Ding Shuang at Standard Chartered.
Key figures around 2040 GMT
Brent North Sea crude: UP 8.8 percent at $106.64 per barrel
West Texas Intermediate: UP 8.4 percent at $102.98 per barrel
New York – DOW: UP 1.2 percent at 34,480.76 (close)
New York – S&P 500: UP 1.2 percent at 4,411.67 (close)
New York – Nasdaq: UP 1.3 percent at 13,614.78 (close)
London – FTSE 100: UP 1.3 percent at 7,385.34 (close)
Frankfurt – DAX: DOWN 0.4 percent at 14,388.06 (close)
Paris – CAC 40: UP 0.4 percent at 6,612.52 (close)
EURO STOXX 50: DOWN 0.1 percent at 3,885.32 (close)
Hong Kong – Hang Seng Index: UP 7.0 percent at 21,501.23 (close)
Tokyo – Nikkei 225: UP 3.5 percent at 26,652.88 (close)
Shanghai – Composite: UP 1.4 percent at 3,215.04 (close)
Euro/dollar: UP at $1.1095 from $1.1035 late Wednesday
At least 19 people died and dozens were injured when a fire tore through a high-rise apartment building in New York City on Sunday, its mayor said, in one of America’s worst residential fires in recent memory.
Both the New York Times and CNN sourced unnamed officials as saying that nine children were among the dead.
“We know that we have 19 people who are confirmed dead, as well as several others in critical condition,” Mayor Eric Adams told CNN, adding that 63 people had been wounded.
“This is going to be one of the worst fires in our history,” he said.
At least 200 firefighters responded to the blaze, which broke out mid-morning on the second and third floors of a 19-story building on East 181st Street, several blocks west of the Bronx Zoo.
Neighbors spoke of seeing residents desperately waving from floors, apparently trapped and unable to escape.
“It was chaos,” George King, who lives directly adjacent the building told AFP.
“I’ve been here 15 years and it’s the first time I’ve seen something like this.
“I saw the smoke, a lot of people were panicking. You could see that no one wanted to jump from the building. People were waving from the windows,” he added.
The cause of the fire was not immediately clear.
The injured were taken to five hospitals; many suffered from cardiac and respiratory arrest, the New York Times reported.
The blaze comes just four days after a fire in Philadelphia killed 12 people, including eight children, in a three-story public housing building.
In New York, there were fears of a growing toll.
“The last time we had a loss of life that may be this horrific was a fire which was over 30 years ago, also here in the Bronx,” said Fire Marshal Dan Nigro, quoted by NBC News.
Flames quickly engulfed much of the structure, and Nigro said the smoke was so dense as to be “unprecedented.”
Photographs and video posted on social media showed flames and thick black smoke billowing out of a third-story window of the brick building as firefighters operated on a nearby ladder.
“This is truly a tragedy,” said Adams, adding that many residents had been displaced.
“This is really a horrific day for us,” he said.
In December 2017, 13 people were killed in a blaze in an apartment building in the Bronx in New York City’s deadliest fire in 25 years.
The state of New York has confirmed five cases of the coronavirus Omicron variant, Governor Kathy Hochul said Thursday, bringing the total number of US detections of the new strain to eight.
“New York State has confirmed five cases of the omicron variant,” Hochul said in a Twitter post aimed at reassuring residents of the nation’s fourth most populous state that the detections were not unexpected.
“Let me be clear: This is no cause for alarm. We knew this variant was coming and we have the tools to stop the spread,” she said.
“Get your vaccine. Get your booster. Wear your mask.”
It was not immediately clear whether the new cases were in or near New York City — the country’s most populous metropolitan area — and whether they were detected in people who had recently returned from traveling outside the country.
Eight cases have so far been confirmed in the United States, with at least one, in Minnesota, involving a person with no recent international travel history, signaling the strain is already circulating inside the country.
Hochul’s figures followed the announcement by President Joe Biden that he is bolstering his administration’s campaign against Covid-19 as the winter takes hold.
The new measures include requiring all inbound international travelers be tested within one day of flying, and an extension of mask mandates on public transportation through mid-March.
The complaint accuses Cuomo of putting his hand down the victim’s blouse and grabbing her left breast in December 2020.
It was filed by the Albany County sheriff’s office on behalf of New York state.
Albany city court issued a summons ordering Cuomo, 63, to appear in court on November 17, 2021 at 2:30 pm (1830 GMT), according to a statement.
He resigned in August after state Attorney General Letitia James issued a report, which was not criminal in nature, concluding that he sexually harassed 11 women, including former staffers.
“From the moment my office received the referral to investigate allegations that former governor Andrew Cuomo sexually harassed multiple women, we proceeded without fear or favor,” James said in a statement.
“The criminal charges brought today against Mr Cuomo for forcible touching further validate the findings in our report,” she added.
Cuomo has strenuously denied the charges and claims he was the victim of a political vendetta.
He gained nationwide adoration last year for his straight-talking daily coronavirus briefings before his spectacular fall from grace.
Forcible touching is a class A misdemeanor that can carry a sentence of up to one year in prison.
Worldwide supply chain disruptions are driving price increases and draining momentum out of economies recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic, the IMF warned on Tuesday.
The ongoing hit from the pandemic and the failure to distribute vaccines worldwide is worsening the economic divide and darkening prospects for developing nations, the IMF said in its latest World Economic Outlook.
The global economy is expected to grow 5.9 per cent this year, only slightly lower than projected in July, before slowing to 4.9 per cent in 2022, the report said.
But the overall figures mask large downgrades and ongoing struggles for some countries, including the United States, Germany and Japan that are feeling the impact of supply bottlenecks, IMF chief economist Gita Gopinath said.
“This recovery is really quite unique,” she told AFP on the sidelines of the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.
Despite a strong return in demand, “the supply side has not been able to come back as quickly,” hampered in part by the spread of the Delta variant of Covid-19, which has made workers reluctant to return to their jobs.
Those labor shortages are “feeding into price pressures” in major economies, she said, slowing growth expectations this year.
Energy prices have hit multi-year highs in recent days, with oil above $80 a barrel, weighing on households.
But Gopinath said she expects energy prices to begin to retreat by the end of the first quarter of 2022.
In low-income developing countries, the outlook “has darkened considerably due to worsening pandemic dynamics,” she said in a blog post on the new forecasts.
The setbacks, which she blamed on the “great vaccine divide,” will impact the restoration of living standards, and a prolonged pandemic downturn “could reduce global GDP by a cumulative $5.3 trillion over the next five years,” she warned.
“The dangerous divergence in economic prospects across countries remains a major concern,” Gopinath said.
Advanced economies are expected to regain “pre-pandemic trend path in 2022 and exceed it by 0.9 per cent in 2024,” she said.
However, in emerging market and developing economies, excluding China, output “is expected to remain 5.5 per cent below the pre-pandemic forecast in 2024.”
Amid the danger of long-term scarring, “The foremost policy priority is, therefore, to vaccinate at least 40 percent of the population in every country by end-2021 and 70 per cent by mid-2022,” she said.
Delicate US balancing act
The world’s largest economy has benefitted from massive fiscal stimulus, but the Delta wave and the supply issues have undermined progress, prompting the IMF to slash the US growth forecast for this year to six per cent, a full percentage point off the July figure.
US growth is expected to slow to 5.2 per cent next year, slightly faster than previously expected, but policymakers will face a delicate balancing act amid risks of rising inflation and lagging employment, the fund noted.
Wages also threaten to rise as employers compete for scarce workers, Gopinath noted.
While inflation is expected to return to “more normal levels” by mid-2022 in most countries, it could take longer in the United States, she told reporters.
“There is tremendous uncertainty, we have never seen a recovery of this kind,” she said, noting labor shortages plaguing employers even amid high unemployment, and supply unable to meet demand.
US consumer prices rose 5.3 percent annually in August, more than double the Federal Reserve’s two-percent goal. Markets on Wednesday will be watching for the government’s September inflation report.
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said she believes the price increases will be “transitory.”
“But I don’t mean to suggest that these pressures will disappear in the next month or two,” she told CBS News. “This is an unprecedented shock to the global economy.”
However, if higher inflation becomes entrenched, it could force central banks to respond aggressively, and rising interest rates would slow the recovery, the IMF cautioned.
President Muhammadu Buhari has arrived in the United States of America, Channels Television has learnt.
The President touched down at the John F Kennedy International Airport in New York, at exactly 5:10 pm local time ahead of the high-level General debate of the United Nations Assembly on September 21, 2021.
He was received by Nigeria’s Permanent representative to the United States, Professor Tijani Bande and the Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama.
President Buhari will address the assembly during the general debates on Friday, September 24.
The President is expected to speak on this year’s theme which is “Building resilience through hope – to recover from COVID-19, rebuild sustainably, respond to the needs of the planet, respect the rights of people and revitalize the United Nations” and other global issues.
Buhari and members of his delegation will partake in other significant meetings such as the high-level meeting to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the Adoption of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action, themed ‘Reparations, Racial Justice, and Equality for People of African Descent’.