New York sues Trump for 'illegal conduct' at family foundation

Friday, 15 Jun, 2018

Donald Trump hit back at the lawsuit on Twitter, saying that "sleazy NY democrats" were "doing everything they can to sue me on a foundation that took in $18,800,000 and gave out to charity more money than it took in, $19,200,000". They didn't meet as required, and didn't address Trump's illegal use of the funds to cover legal fees, giant portraits of himself, football memorabilia, and paying off a golf bet. "Since 2008, however, Mr. Trump has not contributed any personal funds to the Foundation, which instead has been supported by donations from other persons and entities", says the lawsuit.

The foundation and Trump Organization spokespeople have not responded to requests for comment from the AP.

Underwood wants the foundation's remaining $1 million of assets to be distributed amongst other charities, and that Trump be made to pay at least $2.8 million in restitution and penalties.

Also named in the suit were Mr Trump's two sons, Eric and Donald Jr.

She added that she's curious why Trump continues to fight this and refuses to settle, since the investigation has been going on for years and the evidence is mounting.

The Trump Foundation's board of directors did not meet after 1999 and did not approve the activities or expenditures in question, the attorney general's office said.

The extensive suit filed today suggests the investigation was well underway when Underwood took over.

The petition also included references to press releases from the Trump campaign, which were posted on the campaign's website, where the "Trump campaign" specifically claimed credit for disbursing $5.5 million-$6 million to veterans' groups.

"This is politics at its very worst", the statement said, noting that the former NY attorney general who began the investigation, Democrat Eric Schneiderman, was a vocal Trump opponent.

The Trump campaign, at the time, said the foundation meant to co-operate with the investigation.

During the campaign Trump frequently derided a charity run by the Clinton family, saying without proof that the former secretary of state gave favourable treatment to the Clinton Foundation's wealthy donors.

"This is politics at its very worst", a Trump Foundation representative said in a statement.

Schneiderman resigned last month after allegations that he abused women he had dated; he denied the claims. As part of a settlement, the charitable foundation paid $158,000 to a foundation run by Mr. Greenberg.

Elizabeth MacDonald said the NY state attorney general's lawsuit against the Donald J. Trump Foundation is a "scathing rebuke of a sitting president".

The lawsuit adds to Trump's legal problems, including an investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into whether his 2016 campaign colluded with Russian Federation. It alleges that Trump used the foundation to stage a giveaway to veterans during the campaign, to decorate a golf club and pay off creditors.

Trump's foundation was "co-opted" by his presidential campaign, particularly in the run-up to the Iowa caucuses, the lawsuit says.