The years-long investigation into former President Donald Trump's company—the Trump Organization—escalated significantly this week when the New York Attorney General's office announced that the probe was no longer for civil infractions, but criminal ones as well.
In a statement announcing the development, New York Attorney General Letitia James said the Manhattan District Attorney, Cy Vance, was also investigating for criminal activity:
"We have informed the Trump Organization that our investigation into the Organization is no longer purely civil in nature. We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA. We have no additional comment."
The development comes just weeks after authorities executed a long-delayed search warrant for the home of Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, and after Vance's office finally gained access to a significant portion of the financial records Trump had repeatedly concealed from Congress, the authorities, and the public.
While charges have yet to be filed, former Justice Department official Neal Katyal said James' letter presented a damning threat to the Trump Organization and key players within the Trump family.
In an interview with MSNBC's Brian Williams, Katyal said of the letter:
"It's not some statement from Nancy Pelosi or Joe Biden or Kamala Harris. It's not even a Supreme Court loss, of which Trump had many, or a civil fine, of which Trump has paid many. This is a letter talking about jail time."
Given the frantic, practically incoherent statement from Trump regarding the news, Katyal would appear to be right.
Trump predictably rehashed the talking points that every effort towards his accountability was a "witch hunt":
"I have just learned, through leaks in the mainstream media, that after being under investigation from the time I came down the escalator 5 ½ years ago, including the fake Russia Russia Russia Hoax, the 2 year, $48M, No Collusion Mueller Witch Hunt, Impeachment Hoax #1, Impeachment Hoax #2, and others, that the Democrat New York Attorney General has 'informed' my organization that their 'investigation' is no longer just a civil matter but also potentially a "criminal" investigation working with the Manhattan District Attorney's Office."
He went on to accuse James of bias, claiming she was elected by "partisan voters," compared the American legal system to "third-world" countries, and said no President has been treated more viciously than he has.
He wasn't met with sympathy.
And they weren't surprised by its contents.
More and more people agree with Katyal that someone from the Trump Organization—if not Trump himself—will face prison time.
Both the former President's critics and supporters are eagerly awaiting further information on the investigation's status.