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New York sues Trump over 'persistently illegal conduct' at his nonprofit Donald J. Trump foundation
The New York attorney general has filed a lawsuit against President Trump and three of his children over what she says was "persistently illegal conduct" at the nonprofit Donald J. Trump Foundation, The Washington Post reports. The state's investigation, which stemmed from the Post's 2016 reporting on the charity, found that the Trump family allegedly violated a law that requires tax-exempt foundations to benefit the public good rather than the founders privately. Trump allegedly used the Donald J. Trump Foundation to pay off creditors, settle legal disputes for his businesses, and, in one case, buy a $10,000 portrait of himself.
"As our investigation reveals, the 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 New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood, who replaced the disgraced Eric Schneiderman last month.
Underwood further asked that the state judge dissolve Trump's foundation, which he founded in 1987, and ordered Trump to pay a minimum of $2.8 million in penalties. She also asked that Trump be banned from heading any other nonprofits in New York for the next decade. Trump's oldest children — Ivanka Trump, Donald Trump Jr., and Eric Trump — are also named in the lawsuit because as board members, they were legally required to make sure funds weren't being misused. The board, though, had not met since 1999, and Underwood asked that the Trump children be banned from serving as director of any New York nonprofits for a year.
Underwood also noted that Trump has to date repaid more than $330,000 in reimbursements and penalties.