New York attorney general opens inquiry into Trump Foundation

NEW YORK - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has opened an inquiry into the Donald J. Trump Foundation after a series of transactions caught the agency's attention, a source familiar with the matter said.

Schneiderman told CNN's Jake Tapper on "The Lead" he is looking into the charity to ensure it's operating in compliance. "it's complying with the laws governing charities in New York."

"We've had correspondence with them," he said. "I didn't make a big deal out of it or hold a press conference."

A source familiar with the matter confirmed the New York Attorney General's Office opened an inquiry and said it is based on several transactions. The source did not specify a time frame during which the transactions in question were made or elaborate on the nature of the inquiry.

The inquiry follows reports by The Washington Post examining how Trump used money from the foundation, noting that he hasn't given his own money to the foundation since 2008 and that he once spent $20,000 earmarked for charity on a 6-foot-tall portrait of himself.

In a statement to Bloomberg, a Trump campaign aide called the inquiry a "left-wing hit job."

Here's the full statement by Jason Miller, senior communications adviser: "Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is a partisan hack who has turned a blind eye to the Clinton Foundation for years and has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president. This is nothing more than a left-wing hit job designed to distract from Crooked Hillary Clinton's disastrous week."

The foundation is already facing scrutiny after Trump was ordered to pay the IRS a $2,500 penalty this year over a $25,000 donation made under Trump Foundation to a PAC affiliated with Pat Bondi, the Florida attorney general who at the time was considering joining an investigation into Trump University. Bondi personally solicited money from Trump, the Associated Press reported. Bondi and Trump insist they did nothing wrong.

Schneiderman is also in a legal fight with Trump over his namesake university, which the attorney general has called a "three-card monte game." The $40 million lawsuit, filed in 2013, claims students were ripped off by the now-defunct real-estate program.


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