The billion-dollar question is: How much of that filthy lucre has circulated through Donald Trump’s business empire?
Is Trump a Launderer?
Before he became president, Donald Trump was basically an unsuccessful businessman who managed, time and again, to fail upward. He filed for bankruptcy six times — five times for his casinos and once for the Plaza Hotel.
He’s been involved in several high-profile and very expensive investments that ultimately didn’t go forward: the West Side Yards in New York City, the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Dubai, Trump Towers Rio, Trump Ocean Resort in Baja, Mexico, and several shady real-estate deals in Florida.
An astounding number of his other business ventures have gone belly up too, including Trump Airlines, Trump University, and Trump Magazine.
Trump’s business failures over the years and his unorthodox financial behavior pushed him to the margins of the financial world. Only one institution, Deutsche Bank, continued to supply him with credit. Otherwise, Trump began to rely on some questionable characters and networks. He created baroque financial arrangements involving shell companies. He used pseudonyms on contracts. He became squirrely about his tax returns.