Trump helped parents shield millions from taxes

Trump helped parents shield millions from taxes

Trump helped parents shield millions from taxes

President Trump participated in dubious tax schemes during the 1990s, including instances of outright fraud, that greatly increased the fortune he received from his parents, an investigation by The New York Times has found. Mr. Trump won the presidency proclaiming himself a self-made billionaire, and he has long insisted that his father, the legendary New York City builder Fred C. Trump, provided nearly no financial help.

But in a special investigation based on more than 100,000 pages of documents, the New York Times alleges that the president actually received the equivalent of $413m (£318m).

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, backing up Trump's own claims about his wealth, said he took a $1 million loan from his father and paid it back.

The Times said the bulk of the funds owed to tax evasion tactics that Trump helped devise, including a "sham corporation" he and his siblings created to hide millions of dollars in gifts from their parents.

Trump lawyer Charles Harder told the Times its report was inaccurate. Many decades ago the IRS reviewed and signed off on these transactions.

Mr Trump has declined to comment.

The New York State Tax Department is reviewing allegations that Donald Trump received millions of dollars from his father Fred Trump, possibly as part of alleged tax fraud schemes.

According to the Times, the future president was already a millionaire by the time he was 8 years old and was receiving the equivalent of $1 million a year from his father by the time he graduated college - an allowance that increased as he got older. And Trump and his family in turn resorted to a variety of shady tax tricks in the 1990s, including "outright fraud", to maximize the family inheritance.

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In one of the most eye-popping assertions, the Times reported by the time Trump was 3, he was "earning $200,000 a year in today's dollars from his father's empire".

"This is one of the longest stories that we've ever run in the news pages of the Times, one of the longest investigative stories we've run period", said Paul Fishleder, who edited the story and who leads the Times' political investigations unit (which was just formed back in May).

"President Trump had virtually no involvement whatsoever with these matters", he told the paper.

The report from the Times does not shed light on Trump's personal tax returns or current businesses.

"Our father's estate was closed in 2001 by both the Internal Revenue Service and the New York State tax authorities, and our mother's estate was closed in 2004", he continued.

The Times, citing tax experts, reported it was unlikely Trump would face criminal prosecution because the acts were past the statute of limitations.

Instead, the children paid $52.2 million, or about five per cent.

That the president's deceased parents Fred and Mary Trump transferred more than $1bn to their children.

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