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  • Palm Beach International Airport has around 100 departures everyday – Trump says most of these flights are being mustered against him.

    Palm Beach International Airport has around 100 departures everyday – Trump says most of these flights are being mustered against him. | Photo: Reuters

Published 13 January 2015

Is one of Trump's luxury estates under airborne assault, or is the eccentric millionaire full of hot air?

Millionaire and reality TV star Donald Trump has launched yet another high profile lawsuit – this time, over noisy airplanes.

Trump has accused Florida's Palm Beach County of damaging his private clubhouse on the Mar-a-Lago estate with a shadowy revenge plot involving the redirection of thousands of flights. The real estate mogul is demanding US$100 million, according to the Palm Beach Post newspaper.

The newspaper reported the lawsuit was filed last week by Trump, though the local attorney's office told The Associated Press Monday that he still hasn't seen the suit.

Trump himself has told local media that after years of the simmering conflict with the nearby county-run Palm Beach International Airport, officials have maliciously redirected almost all flights to pass over his Mar-a-Lago estate.

The airport has around 100 departures everyday, and serves more than 6 million passengers each year, according to its own website.

Trump has claimed the barrage of air traffic is damaging the Mar-a-Lago's aging structure and disrupting the club's atmosphere. The estate itself was constructed in the 1920s as the private residence of cereal magnate Marjorie Merriweather Post, but was purchased by Trump in 1985.

Since Trump opened the estate as a club in 1995, he has repeatedly been at loggerheads with the county.

His last legal battle with the local government ended in 2010 with his complaints over noisy planes being dismissed by the court. Yet Trump's flight plan woes are far from his only legal escapades.

Trump’s Recent Courtroom Crusades

​In early 2014, Trump lost an attempt to force Scotland's government to retract construction approval for an offshore wind farm. He claimed the wind farm tainted the sea view of his golf course near Aberdeen. In court, Trump alleged the wind farms violated his human rights, and accused former Scottish first minister Alex Salmond of being part of a secretive conspiracy against him and his golf course.

Back in the United States, Trump filed a lawsuit in February 2013 against comedian Bill Maher. Trump accused Maher of reneging on a bet made on air to hand a charity US$5 million if the millionaire property developer could produce his own birth certificate, to prove he isn't half orangutan. Trump quietly dropped the suit in April 2013.

Yet a month later, Trump chalked up a court victory when he successfully fended off allegations from a disgruntled investor. The investor accused Trump of duping her over a profit-sharing venture.

In another courtroom success, in 2011 a former Miss USA hopeful was forced to pay Trump US$5 million after she claimed the beauty contest was rigged. A court ruled the claims were defamatory, while Trump said the contestant learned an “expensive lesson.”

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