June 18, 2018

New York attorney general sues Trump Foundation

14 June 2018, 07:13 | Taylor George

New York sues Trump Foundation for 'illegal conduct'

New York Attorney General sues the Trump Foundation saying it engaged in a pattern of illegal self-dealing

New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood on Thursday filed a lawsuit against President Donald Trump, his charity, and his children Donald Jr., Eric, and Ivanka, alleging that the Trump Foundation followed "a pattern of persistent illegal conduct" for more than a decade.

Barbara Underwood said the foundation had engaged in "extensive unlawful political coordination" created to influence the 2016 election. Underwood's suit seeks to dissolve the Trump Foundation and collect almost $3 million in penalties.

NY is also seeking $US2.8 million ($3.7 million) of restitution plus penalties, a 10-year ban on Mr Trump serving as a director of a NY nonprofit, and one-year bans for his children Donald Jr, Eric and Ivanka.

"The Foundation now has $1.7 million remaining which the [New York Attorney General] has been holding hostage for political gain", the spokesman said in a statement.

The Trump campaign, at the time, said the foundation meant to cooperate with the investigation.

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The attorney general's office said that it was only after it began its investigation that the foundation paid excise taxes on three of the transactions, and that Mr Trump restored funds for those transactions to the charity. "I won't settle this case!".

Trump responded to the lawsuit less than an hour after it was made public, blasting "sleazy New York Democrats and their now disgraced (and run out of town) A.G. Eric Schneiderman". "This is unconscionable - particularly because the Foundation previously announced its intention to dissolve more than a year and a half ago".

The suit also alleges that the Trump charity raised in excess of $2.8m "in a manner created to influence the 2016 presidential election at the direction and under the control of senior leadership of the Trump presidential campaign". The lawsuit alleges that the foundation's board of directors has been willfully engaged in violations of state and federal law. "Trump ran the foundation according to whim, rather than law".

In a couple of tweets, Trump called the case "ridiculous" and said he would not settle the lawsuit.

She asked that its remaining $1 million in assets be distributed to other charities and that Trump be forced to pay at least $2.8 million in restitution and penalties.

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