The New York state attorney general’s $40 million lawsuit against Donald Trump’s real estate investment “university” alleges some of the school’s instructors had previously only worked as motivational speakers or salesmen while others had gone bankrupt investing in real estate.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s damning suit repeatedly refutes Trump’s claims that he handpicked instructors who could guarantee students success at real estate investing in exchange for $25,000 to $35,000 in tuition.
In one video, Trump said “if you don’t learn from me, if you don’t learn from the people that we’re putting forward, and these are all the people that are handpicked by me, then you’re just not going to make it,” according to the complaint.
In reality, Trump allegedly failed to do substantial research to back up job candidates’ claims that they’d made money from investing in real estate. From the lawsuit:
In addition, many candidates came directly to Trump University from other seminar companies — where they worked as motivational speakers or sales representatives — or employment having little if anything to do with real estate investment.
Trump University was also aware that some of its instructors and mentors who had been investing in real estate had filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection shortly before coming to work at Trump University, belying any claims of success as real estate investors.
The students who attended Trump now have their own financial troubles, Schneiderman says. Some students allegedly took on $20,000 in credit card debt after Trump University speakers encouraged them to do so. One lost her life savings at Trump University, according to the complaint.
For his part, Trump says Schneiderman filed the lawsuit because he was angry the real estate mogul didn’t contribute to the attorney general’s political campaign.