Tax authorities in New York initiated an investigation after The New York Times reported fraud allegations against United States President Donald Trump and his family, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday. Trump and his family are accused of creating their real estate empire through “instances of outright fraud” and by evading taxes.
“The Tax Department is reviewing the allegations in The New York Times article and is vigorously pursuing all appropriate avenues of investigation,” said James Gazzale, the spokesperson for the Department of Taxation and Finance.
Charles J Harder, Trump’s lawyer, said the allegations of fraud and tax evasion raised in the report “are 100% false”. “There was no fraud or tax evasion by anyone,” Harder said. “The facts upon which the [The New York] Times bases its false allegations are extremely inaccurate.”
According to The New York Times report, Trump received the equivalent today of at least $413 million (Rs 3,027 crore) from his father’s real estate empire. Tax records indicated that Trump helped his father, Fred C Trump, take improper tax deductions worth millions. Trump and his siblings also set up a fake corporation to disguise millions of dollars in gifts from their parents.
The report was based on more than 1 lakh documents, including Fred Trump’s tax returns, and interviews with his former employees and advisers.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders called the report a “misleading attack” against the president and his family. “Fred Trump has been gone for nearly 20 years and it’s sad to witness this misleading attack against the Trump family by the failing New York Times.” She said “many decades ago the IRS reviewed and signed off on these transactions”.