Trump agrees to shut down personal charity after lawsuit

Updated Dec 20 2018

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Foundation allegedly illegally helped support the Republican’s campaign by raising money at a fundraiser in 2016. — File
Foundation allegedly illegally helped support the Republican’s campaign by raising money at a fundraiser in 2016. — File

NEW YORK: US President Donald Trump agreed to dissolve his foundation which the New York Attorney General said on Tuesday served as a personal piggy bank for his businesses, legal bills and presidential campaign.

The lawsuit charged that the Donald J. Trump Foun­dation “was little more than a checkbook for payments from Mr. Trump or his businesses to nonprofits, regardless of their purpose or legality”, said Democratic Attorney General Barbara Underwood.

The lawsuit says the foundation illegally helped support the Republican’s campaign by raising money at a nationally televised fundraiser in January 2016, then allowing campaign staffers to dictate how the money was spent in grants.

In addition to shuttering the charity, her office has pursued a lawsuit that could bar Trump and his three oldest children from the boards of other New York charities, as well as force payment of millions in restitution and penalties.

AFP adds: The New York attorney general filed a lawsuit against the Trump Fou­ndation in June, accusing it of “persistently illegal conduct”. The suit, which continues to move forward, names the president, his sons Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, and his daughter Ivanka Trump, who were on the board of the foundation.

Trump defended his personal charity, the Trump Foundation, on Wednesday after the New York authorities said it had engaged in a “shocking pattern of illegality” and agreed to shut it down. “The Trump Founda­tion has done great work and given away lots of money, both mine and others, to great charities over the years — with me taking NO fees, rent, salaries etc,” Trump tweeted. Trump claimed he was being treated unfairly by partisan Democrats and was the victim of what he called a “total double standard of ‘justice.’”.

Published in Dawn, December 20th, 2018