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The New York Attorney said the Donald J. Trump Foundation's assets will be distributed to charities vetted by her office.
U.S. President Donald Trump's namesake charitable foundation has agreed to dissolve under court supervision following a lawsuit by New York's attorney general claiming a “shocking pattern of illegality” and accusing Trump of misusing the foundation to advance his 2016 presidential campaign and his businesses.
New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood said the Donald J. Trump Foundation's assets will be distributed to charities vetted by her office. The deal is subject to approval by a New York state judge.
“Our petition detailed a shocking pattern of illegality involving the Trump Foundation – including unlawful coordination with the Trump presidential campaign, repeated and willful self-dealing, and much more,” Underwood said in a statement Tuesday.
“This amounted to the Trump Foundation functioning as little more than a checkbook to serve Mr Trump’s business and political interests.” Trump, a Republican, has previously said on Twitter that Underwood's lawsuit was a concoction by "sleazy New York Democrats."
The ruling came less than a month after Justice Saliann Scarpulla of the New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan rejected Trump's motion to dismiss Underwood's lawsuit.
The motion had argued that the U.S. Constitution immunized Trump from Underwood's claims alleging breach of fiduciary duty, improper self-dealing, and misuse of assets belonging to the Foundation.
Underwood sued Trump and his adult children Donald Jr., Eric and Ivanka on June 14, after a 21-month probe that she said uncovered "extensive unlawful political coordination" between the foundation and Trump's campaign. The lawsuit remains pending.
Underwood alleged, among other things, that Trump wrongly ceded control to his campaign of about US$2.8 million donated to the foundation in a 2016 Iowa fundraiser for military veterans. Other challenged expenses included US$100,000 to settle a dispute involving Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort, and US$10,000 for a portrait of Trump that was later hung at one of his golf clubs.