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New York Attorney General raises stakes in Trump Foundation lawsuit

The New York Attorney General has pushed back against the US President’s attempts to dismiss the lawsuit alleging he broke federal charity laws

New court filings have accused US President, Donald Trump, of “willful and intentional conduct” in his handling of his charity during the 2016 presidential campaign.

New York Attorney General, Barbara Underwood, said the President caused the charity to break state and federal laws governing not-for-profits. This is in response to Trump’s efforts to dismiss the lawsuit against himself and his three adult children.

In the filings, Underwood wrote: “Donald J. Trump used his control over the Donald J. Trump Foundation for his personal, business and political interests in violation of federal and state laws governing charities.”

Underwood claimed that the foundation operated in “persistent violation of state and federal laws governing charities” for more than a decade. She added that the charity was used to satisfy Trump’s for-profit companies, promote his hotels, make personal purchases and to promote Trump’s candidacy for political office.

In August, an Attorney representing Trump, Alan Futerfas, wrote in a motion to dismiss the former New York Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman’s, suit, claiming it was “his stated mission to ‘lead the resistance’ and attack Mr. Trump wherever possible”.

Futerfas added that the Attorney General’s office “turned a blind eye to serious and significant allegations of misconduct involving the Clinton Foundation”.

Underwood is currently seeking $US2.8 million in restitution, and additional penalties, as well as to dissolve the Trump Foundation under court supervision. The suit will ban Trump from running a New York not-for-profit for the next decade and institute a one year ban for his three eldest children.

She has also sent referral letters to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Federal Election Commission that identify possible violations of federal laws.

In a tweet in June, Trump protested the lawsuit and the “sleazy New York Democrats” and vowed that he would not settle the case, insisting there was no wrongdoing.

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