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Donald Trump's rough run: Now he's being sued by hundreds of property investors


Donald Trump
has not had the best few weeks.

His slide began when President Obama called the Trump's bluff by releasing his official long-form Hawaii birth certificate. Then, after a Navy SEALs team killed Osama bin Laden, the president's live announcement cut into the the end of "The Celebrity Apprentice" on the East coast.

In an attempt to distance themselves from the unseemly world of politics, the bigwigs at the Indianapolis 500 decided to replace Trump, who has hinted at running for president, with racing legend A.J. Foyt as the driver of the Chevy Camaro pace car during the opening lap of the 100th anniversary of the car race.

And now the New York Times is reporting that hundreds of people are suing Trump and his associates, alleging deceptive real estate practices in which buyers believe they are investing in Trump property only to discover the billionaire had "rented his name to the developments and had no responsibility for their outcomes."

"In each case, he yanked his name off the projects, which were never completed," Michael Barbaro wrote in an article titled "Buying a Trump Property, or So They Thought" that appeared on the front page of the paper on Friday. "The buyers lost millions of dollars in deposits even as Mr. Trump pocketed hefty license fees," Barbaro reported.

Trump and Barbaro were scheduled to talk about the article on CNBC, but when Barbaro didn't appear, the ever-reserved Trump called him a "terrible reporter" who "didn't have the guts" face off against him on the cable channel because "he doesn't have any facts."

Then the businessman focused his vitriol on the Gray Lady.

"It's interesting that the Times does this on a couple of licensing deals when they sell their property ... for $120 million, $175 million to people that I know [who] flip the building for $500 million a short time later," Trump said. "This is the New York Times writing about me with a couple of licensing deals."



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Comments () | Archives (5)

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I've been seen too many 'developers' in my business career let the unsuspecting consumer, subcontractor, supplier and government by way of unpaid taxes take it in the shorts. The chump licenses his name, takes away two million dollars, then the project isn't built. He or the firm that he is associated with then don't refund with any interest the money paid for the down payment. The chump gets around this by saying he isn't involved. If he's the driver of the get away car in a bank robbery, then he is as libel as the person who took the money from the teller in the bank.

It amaze me that we even this idiot so much attention. Why do we do it ?

... I'm from the TEA Party and I'm here to help!

He'll fit into Washington very nicely!

I don't know if Trump will run or not, but, politics aside, business is business, the investors had a financial/fiscal responsibility to invest with due diligence and moreso to do a complete research on the properties they apparently invested in. Looking up a property that has a picture of a building with the name Trump on it does not constitute research. Anyone that knows anything about Donald Trump knows that he is big on licensing and branding, more specifically, he's big on paid sponsoring. I feel that this lawsuit will flop dramatically and Trump will win, the investors have no case, they were foolish and absolutely stupid to have not done full research on their investments. All Trump apparently did was, was to lend his name to various buildings for a time, then for whatever reason he pulled his name, nothing wrong with that.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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