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Trump Says He Can’t Comply With Subpoena Because He Can’t Find His Phone

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Have you seen this phone? Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Donald Trump’s personal life isn’t always relatable for many Americans, what with his inherited fortune and decades of fame and all. But his latest problem in New York State is quite familiar: He can’t find his damn phone.

In an affidavit filed to the Supreme Court of the State of New York on Friday night, Trump’s lawyers wrote that he could not comply with state attorney general Letitia James’s subpoena to hand over documents related to a civil fraud probe into the Trump Organization because he lost the four cell phones containing those documents. “I don’t know its current whereabouts,” he says in the filing of one of the four phones provided to him by the Trump Organization. “I do not know their current location,” he says of “two flip phones and a Samsung mobile phone” he has owned since 2010 — adding that the Samsung was “was taken from me at some point while I was President.”

In the filing, in which he requests an end to the fines, Trump claims he turned over his personal phone and authorized his attorneys to search Mar-a-Lago, his Trump Tower condo, and his mansion in New Jersey for any relevant documents related to James’s subpoena. But he is still being fined $10,000 per day for not complying fully with the subpoena for records issued April 25, costing him $140,000 so far. James’s office is investigating the Trump Organization’s alleged practice of inflating asset values when looking for loans; in February, her team said it found evidence “showing that Donald J. Trump and the Trump Organization used fraudulent and misleading financial statements to obtain economic benefit.”

While most Americans would be hard pressed to find their cellphones from as far back as 2010, there is one claim in the affidavit worth parsing over. Trump says that for the past 12 years, “it has been my customary practice not to keep any documents, files, or papers relating to my business activities in my private residences.” However, the National Archives and Records Administration stated in February that Trump took top-secret documents to Mar-a-Lago when he left office, suggesting he does bring his work home in some capacity.

Trump, who once misplaced his unencrypted personal phone while president by leaving it on a golf cart, does provide some information in the filing on his current cellular situation. Trump says he has two cell phones: an iPhone he uses for personal matters and another phone he received last week from Truth Social, the social-media company he founded after getting banned from Twitter. That new phone has coincided with an uptick in his “Truth”-posting: Although he hardly touched the app for its first few months, he has been more active the past week, boosting his primary endorsements and posting stuff like “At the Kentucky Derby with friends!”

Maybe they know where his old phones are.