On Tuesday, New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) announced a significant change in her long-running investigation of former president Donald Trump’s business practices.

Previously, her investigation had been a civil one ― if James found wrongdoing, the worst she could do was sue Trump or his businesses.

On Tuesday, however, James’s office said in a statement it also was pursuing a criminal investigation, meaning that James could eventually file criminal charges against someone in Trump’s orbit. A spokesman for the attorney general’s office said James is working with Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance (D), who has been conducting a separate criminal investigation into Trump’s finances since 2018.

Here’s what we know — and what we don’t — about these two New York state investigations.

In May 2021, The Post’s David Fahrenthold told us what is known — and what isn’t — about two New York state investigations of the Trump organization. (Luis Velarde/The Washington Post)

What to know

  • What does this tell us about the New York attorney general’s investigation?
  • Can James use the evidence she gathered in her civil investigation now, if she pursues a criminal case?
  • What part of Trump’s life are the district attorney and the attorney general investigating?
  • Why is this taking so long?
  • Is this development bad for Trump?
  • Does this mean that the two New York investigations are now merged into one?