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US government lawyers interview Ivanka Trump over alleged misuse of funds by presidential committee

Lawyers allege that Donald Trump’s inauguration committee misused donor funds.

Ivanka Trump with her father at a rally (file photo)
Ivanka Trump with her father at a rally (file photo)
Image: PA Images

IVANKA TRUMP HAS been interviewed by government lawyers alleging that Donald Trump’s 2017 inauguration committee misused donor funds, a new court filing has revealed.

The document, first reported by CNN on Wednesday, notes that the president’s daughter – a senior White House adviser – was interviewed on Tuesday by lawyers from the attorney general’s office.

The office has filed a lawsuit alleging waste of the non-profit’s funds, accusing the committee of making more than one million dollars (€825,000) in improper payments to the president’s Washington DC hotel during the week of the inauguration in 2017.

As part of the lawsuit, they have subpoenaed records from Ivanka Trump, first lady Melania Trump, Thomas Barrack Jr, a close friend of the president who chaired the inaugural committee, and others. Barrack was also interviewed last month.

Trump’s inaugural committee spent more than a million dollars to book a ballroom at the Trump International Hotel in the nation’s capital as part of a scheme to “grossly overpay” for party space and enrich the president’s own family in the process, the District of Columbia’s attorney general, Karl Racine, alleges.

He has accused the committee of misusing non-profit funds and coordinating with the hotel’s management and members of the Trump family to arrange the events.

“District law requires non-profits to use their funds for their stated public purpose, not to benefit private individuals or companies,” Racine has said.

“In this case, we are seeking to recover the non-profit funds that were improperly funnelled directly to the Trump family business.”

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The committee raised an unprecedented 107 million dollars (€88 million) to host events celebrating Trump’s inauguration in January 2017, but its spending has drawn continued scrutiny.

Alan Garten, from the Trump Organisation said in a statement: “Ms Trump’s only involvement was connecting the parties and instructing the hotel to charge a ‘fair market rate,’ which the hotel did.”

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