The New York attorney general, which has been investigating the Donald J. Trump Foundation for months, is now looking into the Eric Trump Foundation, after a report in Forbes exposed practices that seem to violate state laws. “The attorney general’s office is looking into the issues raised by this report,” said Eric Soufer, the communications director for the New York state attorney general.
One potential issue: The Donald J. Trump Foundation donated $100,000 to the Eric Trump Foundation, with the intent of covering the costs for payments to a Donald Trump-owned property, according to Ian Gillule, who worked at Trump National Westchester during two stints from 2006 to 2015.
“The interaction between the Donald J. Trump Foundation and the Eric Trump Foundation is a novel aspect to this situation,” says Marcus Owens, who used to run the nonprofit division of the IRS. “It’s not often that you have a father and son set of foundations that are both under investigation by the same attorney general for basically misusing assets and interacting with each other in ways that cause assets to be used for non-charitable purposes.”
The Eric Trump Foundation also gave donors the impression that all of the money raised at its annual golf event went to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a leading pediatric cancer center in Memphis, Tennessee. But according to IRS filings submitted by the Eric Trump Foundation, more than $500,000 went to other causes, several of which had ties to Trump family businesses or interests.