(CNN) Donald Trump on Thursday morning arrived for a deposition as part of a high-stakes civil case brought by New York state against the former president, some of his children and his sprawling business empire.
The lawsuit, brought last September by New York Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat, alleges that Trump, his children Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump and Ivanka Trump, and the Trump Organization were involved in an expansive scheme lasting over a decade by providing false financial statements to lenders and others that the former president used to enrich himself.
The suit is seeking $250 million and bans on the Trumps’ ability to operate a business in the state. The case is set for trial in October. The Trumps have denied wrongdoing.
The elder Trump’s deposition is part of the discovery process of the case. Though he will likely be peppered with hundreds of questions on Thursday, it’s unclear whether he’ll provide any answers or cite his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, as he did last August when he sat for a deposition before James’ office a month before the suit was filed.
In a civil case, if a defendant asserts the Fifth Amendment, the jury can make what’s known as an “adverse inference” and place weight against Trump for refusing to answer questions.
Thursday’s appearance will also mark the first time Trump has been back in New York since he pleaded not guilty last week in Manhattan criminal court to 34 charges of falsifying business records following an investigation into hush money payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels.
After Trump’s first sit-down in August, the former president and his legal team have been able to glean more knowledge about the allegations against him because documents and other materials have been turned over to them.
Trump’s three children named in the case were also deposed by the attorney general’s office last year, with Ivanka and Donald Trump Jr., both providing answers to prosecutors, while Eric Trump invoked his Fifth Amendment right in 2020 in response to more than 500 questions.