Donald Trump Jr. has denied using nonprofits meant for his father’s inauguration in 2017 to enrich the Trump family, in a statement obtained by DailyMail.com.
Washington DC AG Karl Racine filed a lawsuit against the Trump Inaugural Committee and the Trump Organization in January 2020 for misusing more than $ 1 million in nonprofits.
The lawsuit alleges that the committee coordinated with the Trump family to “ pay grossly too much ” for the event space at the Trump International Hotel and falsely used the money to host a private party for the Trumps worth several hundred thousand dollars. cost.
The application identified Don Jr.’s assistant. as the point of contact in a block of hotel rooms for nearly $ 50,000 and says his “good friend” provided the “authorizing signature.”
The key witness in the lawsuit is Melania’s former best friend and inaugural event planner Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, who claims she voiced concerns about pricing to Donald Trump, Ivanka and Rick Gates, a leading campaign official at the time.
But Don Jr. says in the statement, “I had nothing to do with her.”
‘I know her. I think I met her, but I don’t know her, ”said Don Jr. about the event planner.
Don Jr. was impeached on Feb. 11 by the Attorney General, who claims the commission is “ blatantly and unlawfully misusing nonprofit funds to enrich the Trump family. ”
Washington DC Attorney General Karl Racine is investigating Donald Trump’s inaugural commission payments to his hotel. His office interviewed Donald Trump Jr. on February 11
Melania’s former best friend and assistant Stephanie Winston Wolkoff (left) claims she expressed concerns about pricing at Donald Trump, Ivanka and Rick Gates, a leading campaign officer at the time.
The committee and Trump entities were indicted in January 2020 on allegations that it had spent more than $ 1 million to book a ballroom at the Trump International Hotel before its inauguration, as part of a plan to “ pay grossly too much. ‘for banquet space and that of the president. family in the process.
“The evidence is clear,” Racine said. The Trump company and the Trump family used the not-for-profit to make a profit themselves.
The lawsuit alleges that Wolkoff documented her warning in an email to Gates and Ivanka in December 2016. Wolkoff is the author of the tell-all book Melania and Me
That’s why the Presidential Inauguration Commission paid so much money for rooms and event space that were well above the market price during the Inauguration Commission, which is why we just adjusted our complaint to include that Donald Trump Jr.’s good friend. essentially a free set of rooms for a set amount of time during the inauguration without a non-profit cause. ‘
Don Jr. and the Trump Organization have denied abusing nonprofits.
Don Jr’s statement raised “ further questions ” about a $ 49,359 contract, which witnesses testified that in connection with the inauguration, the Trump Organization had reached a block of rooms at the Lowe’s Madison hotel, just north of the White House , in connection with the inauguration.
The bill was submitted to Donald Trump’s Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC), a nonprofit that oversaw the inaugural activities.
Although the PIC took the bill, Don Jr. not identify donors to the committee who actually used the rooms.
In his statement, Don Jr. that he does not recall attending any of the planning meetings for the inauguration and that he seemed to remember little of the evening comparing the event on his wedding day.
“You hear a little bit here and there, but then again, I wasn’t involved enough,” he said. “It wasn’t something too big on my priority list, considering what I was dealing with.”
He went on to say that event planning “isn’t really my thing.”
“It’s not my job description, it’s not what I do,” he added.
Don Jr. also said he “couldn’t remember” having any discussions about the finances of the PIC.
‘I know her. I think I met her, but I don’t know her, ”said Don Jr. about Wolkoff in the statement from DailyMail.com. ‘If she were in this room I’m not sure I would recognize her’
In his statement, Don Jr. that he does not remember attending any planning meetings for the inauguration. “You hear a little bit here and there, but then again, I wasn’t involved enough,” he said. ‘It wasn’t something too big on my priority list considering what I was dealing with’
Ivanka Trump was subpoenaed in October, along with other members of Trump’s camp, including First Lady Melania, Gates, and investor Thomas J. Barrack Jr.
Barrack Jr. was deposed on November 17.
The lawsuit alleges that Wolkoff also documented her warning in an email to Gates and Ivanka in December 2016.
Wolkoff is the author of the all-telling book Melania and Me.
Ms. Wolkoff asked them, “ Keep in mind that when this is checked, it will become common knowledge that the sites have also been donated and the costs insured to lower rents, ” the suit states.
“The PIC and the Trump Hotel ignored these warnings and proceeded with the improper payments at issue in this case.”
When asked about the names of the rooms and the bill, Mr. Trump was unable to testify whether any of them were meeting [inaugural committee]Instead, the names were associated with the campaign or with the Trump family, ” the filing said.
“ For example, Mr. Trump testified that one was a friend from college, the other a driver of the Trump family, another a New York socialite from Real Housewives of New York, who is also a friend of the Trump family. ” , he said.
That real housewife was revealed as Jill Zarin in the statement.
Trump’s inaugural committee hired the facilities of the Trump International Hotel DC, overpaid for the ballroom, and falsely hosted a private party for Ivanka, Don Jr. and Eric Trump, the DC attorney general claims.
The lavish affair began with the Trump administration in 2017, with events at the Trump Hotel
The filing identifies Don Jr.’s assistant Lindsay Santoro as the point of contact in the block of rooms, saying that his “ good friend ” Trump Jr. Gentry Beach has provided the ‘authorizing signature’.
The two men are pictured together wearing a tuxedo in a fundraising campaign for Operation Smile in 2006. Beach is a stock trader who raised money for the Trump campaign and who lives with Don Jr. went to college.
At the time of the lawsuit, Racine said the committee is required by law to use their funds for their stated public purpose, not for personal benefit.
“In this case, we are trying to reclaim the nonprofits that were falsely funneled directly into the Trump family business,” he said in January.
It was the latest allegation that Trump and his family used public and nonprofit organizations issued in Trump properties to enrich themselves – part of the danger that Trump would not fully withdraw from his companies while he was president.