Donald Trump is being fined $10,000 for every day he fails to supply documents requested in the civil case into his business.
The former president was found in contempt of court on Monday in New York for not producing the documents subpoenaed in the state attorney general’s civil probe of his business practices.
He has been ordered to pay $10,000 (£7,600) a day until he gives the attorney general the documents.
Mr Trump was unsuccessful in quashing the subpoena then failed to hand over the documents by a court-ordered 3 March deadline, which was then extended to 31 March at his lawyers’ request.
Justice Arthur Engoron ruled Mr Trump was in contempt because there were “repeated failures” to hand over materials and it was not clear the ex-president had conducted a thorough search for the documents.
“Mr Trump, I know you take your business seriously, and I take mine seriously. I hereby hold you in civil contempt,” the judge told the courtroom, although Mr Trump was not present.
State Attorney General Letitia James is investigating whether the Trump Organization misstated the values of its properties to obtain favourable loans and tax deductions.
She said she has found “significant evidence” suggesting the Trump family company’s financial statements for more than a decade “relied on misleading asset valuations and other misrepresentations to secure economic benefits”.
How the Trump Organization valued the Trump brand and properties, including golf clubs in Scotland and New York, and his own penthouse flat in Midtown Manhattan’s Trump Tower, have all been questioned by the attorney general.
Mr Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba, said the Trump Organization was “right on schedule” with its production of documents.
She insisted she went to great lengths to comply with the subpoena and even travelled to Florida to ask the former president specifically whether he had any documents that would comply with the demand.
“The contempt motion is inappropriate and misleading,” she said.
“He complied. There are no more documents left to produce by President Trump.”
Ms Habba said the investigation was a “fishing expedition”.
“This is a political crusade,” Ms Habba said. “The attorney general’s investigation has seemingly become aimless.”
Mr Trump has called the investigation a politically motivated “witch hunt”.
A criminal investigation is running alongside the civil probe by the Manhattan District Attorney, Alvin Bragg.