The lawsuit was filed on Thursday in the Supreme Court of the State of New York. It also names as defendants the president’s sister, Maryanne Trump Barry, and the estate of Robert Trump, the president’s brother who died last summer.
“Mary’s father, and their brother, Fred Trump Jr., died in 1981 when Mary was just sixteen years old,” the lawsuit states. “Upon his death, Mary inherited valuable minority interests in the family business. Donald, Maryanne, and Robert committed to watch over her interests as fiduciaries. They lied. Rather than protect Mary’s interests, they designed and carried out a complex scheme to siphon funds away from her interests, conceal their grift, and deceive her about the true value of what she had inherited.”
Fred Trump died in 1999. At the time Mary Trump and her brother sued the Trump family, arguing that they should be entitled to their father’s share of Fred Trump’s real estate empire. They reached a settlement.
As chronicled in her book, released this summer, Mary Trump cooperated with a 2018 New York Times investigation of Donald Trump’s finances.
“Recently, I learned that rather than protecting me, they instead betrayed me by working together in secret to steal from me, by telling lie after lie about the value of what I had inherited, and by conning me into giving everything away for a fraction of its true value.” Mary Trump said in a statement. “I am bringing this case to hold them accountable and to recover what is rightfully mine.”
She is being represented by Roberta Kaplan, partner at Kaplan, Hecker & Fink LLP.
White House spokeswoman Kayleigh McEnany said, “The only fraud committed there was Mary Trump reporting one of her relatives and she has really discredited herself.” That appeared to be a reference to Mary Trump’s secretly recording of conversations with Maryanne Trump. Some of the excerpt were provided to The Washington Post, in which the president’s sister is heard calling him as someone who “has no principles.”
The lawsuit seeks compensatory and punitive damages, but claims that she was defrauded out of millions of dollars.
“For Donald J. Trump, his sister Maryanne, and their late brother Robert, fraud was not just the family business—it was a way of life,” the lawsuit states. “Beginning in the 1980s, these siblings took control of the New York City real estate empire that their father Fred Sr. had built, and exploited it to enrich themselves at the expense of everyone around them. They concocted scheme after scheme to cheat on their taxes, swindle their business partners, and jack up rents on their low- income tenants.”
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