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BuzzFeed investigation uncovers several Trump-related domain names owned by known mob affiliate Joseph Cinque

A mob-linked friend of President-elect Donald Trump apparently obtained a handful of Trump-related domain names in Asia, BuzzFeed News reports. Joseph "No Socks" Cinque is the chairman of the American Association of Hospitality Sciences, but in 1989 he was convicted of a felony over stolen art found in his apartment — and according to a 1995 profile in New York, was a friend of Gambino crime family boss John Gotti.

Cinque most recently was in the news for his appearance at the president-elect's New Year's Eve party, where video of the event shows him "next to Trump fist-pumping as [Trump] pledges to cut taxes and dismantle ObamaCare," BuzzFeed News writes. Trump has denied knowing about Cinque's shady past — or, in Trump's words: "If a guy's going to give you an award, you take it. You don't tend to look up his whole life story."

The American Academy of Hospitality Sciences has recognized Trump properties several times. But BuzzFeed News' investigation reveals the firm has also possessed Trump-related domain names in Asia since at least 2008, with the Trump Organization's general counsel named as the email contact. The AAHS registered domains like donaldtrump.asia, ivankatrump.asia, thedonald.asia, and trumptowerbeijing.com, along with many others. The domains registered by AAHS do not direct to any websites.

It's unclear why the domains were purchased by AAHS. A lawyer for the association, the Trump Organization, and the presidential transition team did not respond to BuzzFeed News' request for comment.