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Trump’s charity admits to violating IRS self-dealing ban

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    President-elect Donald Trump spoke during an election night rally, Nov. 9, in New York. Trump’s charity admitted that it violated IRS regulations barring it from using its money or assets to benefit Trump, his family, his companies or substantial contributors to the foundation.

WASHINGTON » President-elect Donald Trump’s charity has admitted that it violated IRS regulations barring it from using its money or assets to benefit Trump, his family, his companies or substantial contributors to the foundation.

According to a 2015 tax return posted on the nonprofit monitoring website GuideStar, the Donald J. Trump Foundation acknowledged that it used money or assets in violation of the regulations not only during 2015, but in prior years.

The tax filing, first reported today by The Washington Post, doesn’t provide details on the violations. The filing’s release comes as the New York attorney general’s office investigates whether Trump personally benefited from the foundation’s spending, including several purchases detailed in reports by The Post.

Questions sent via email to Trump’s transition team weren’t immediately answered today.

The foundation’s admission in the tax filing isn’t the first time it has run afoul of laws and regulations governing charitable organizations.

In October, the office of New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, a Democrat, ordered the foundation to stop soliciting donations after it was discovered that the charity had been accepting outside contributions without the proper New York state registration.

The foundation also gave an improper $25,000 check to a political committee supporting Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi in 2013.

Charities are barred from engaging in political activities, and the president-elect’s staff says the check he signed was mistakenly issued following a series of inexplicable clerical errors. Earlier this year, the Trump Foundation paid a $2,500 fine to the IRS over the check.

Trump had intended to use personal funds to support Bondi’s re-election, his campaign said. At the time, Bondi’s office was fielding media questions about whether she would follow the lead of Schneiderman, who had filed a lawsuit against Trump University and Trump Institute.

Scores of former students say they were scammed by Trump’s namesake get-rich-quick seminars in real estate. Bondi, who the AP reported in June personally solicited the $25,000 check from Trump, took no action against Trump University.

Trump last week settled three lawsuits over Trump University days before the scheduled start of a fraud trial in California, agreeing to pay out $25 million with no admission of wrongdoing. Bondi, meanwhile, met with Trump in Manhattan last week and appears to be under consideration for an appointment in the Trump administration.

Associated Press writer Julie Bykowicz contributed to this report.

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    • IRT GrLan21, this Trump Foundation issue was brought out during the campaign and it’s known he paid a fine for the contribution to the Florida AG. Also, not in article, Trump paid for his portrait from his Foundation. Old news.

    • Trump Foundation is caught running fraudulent transactions through its book to benefit Trump, and you somehow blame the media. Although Trump supporters seem to prefer to exist in a world where facts and science don’t exist, this is the role of the media in a free society — to uncover the facts. The Trump Foundation is a fraud on so many levels that Trump even had his foundation pay the $7 annual fee for his son’s boy scout membership.

        • Just so we understand, you believe Trump did nothing wrong and Clinton did? Or, Trump did something wrong but Clinton was worse so it should cancel Trumps wrong?

        • My belief is they both did something wrong but each side wants to protect their side so they point at the other side, my kids do this all the time too. No honesty even in SOME of their supporters.

        • Clinton is history. What did the Chump expect? Now that he is president elect he won’t have a private life as hard as he tries. Look how quickly he settled the Chump university fiasco after fighting it for so many years. Hope he makes it to his own inauguration. This drama is better than the Harry Potter series.

    • Hey HRS134, “Donald Trump’s charity has admitted that it violated IRS regulations barring it from using its money or assets to benefit Trump, his family, his companies or substantial contributors to the foundation.” Do you think the media was spinning…?

    • Seriously, you are talking about the future POTUS as if he was paying a parking ticket. The Chump has used shady business practices to enrich himself for his entire life. All of his supporters praise him as a successful businessman. The fact is that he has gone through multiple bankruptcies and always took care of his own interests before paying off his debts. I think that his winning the presidency will be more of a curse than a victory because he will always be on the main stage with the whole world watching.

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