Trump says he didn't need to borrow from banks

Clay Curtis
May 20, 2019

Transactions linked to President Trump and his son-in-law raised red flags in a Deutsche Bank computer system created to detect money laundering in 2016 and 2017, but the bank decided not to act, reports the New York Times, citing "five current and former bank employees".

Five paragraphs, down, however, the Times admits the allegedly suspicious activity doesn't mean there was anything "improper" about the transaction.

"The suggestion that anyone was reassigned or fired in an effort to quash concerns related to any client is categorically false", he added.

US President Donald Trump lashed out at the "failing New York Times" in a Monday morning tweet storm after the newspaper reported that Deutsche Bank employees had noticed "suspicious activity" on his accounts.

The Times reported that Deutsche Bank was the only institution that dealt with Trump at the time.

A spokeswoman for the German banker denied McFadden's claims.

The Times explained that certain transactions, particularly involving real-estate, can sometimes automatically trigger review procedures without any wrongdoing.

Certain dealings in 2016 and 2017, including some with entities and individuals outside the United States, set off automated alerts in the bank's systems, prompting employees to prepare "suspicious activity reports" on some of them.

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Instead of going to Deutsche Bank anti-money laundering experts, her report and supporting documents went to NY managers who were part of the private banking arm, which works with the extremely wealthy, the Times reports.

Deutsche Bank was one of the few major banks to continue to lend to Trump following the bankruptcies of his casinos and other businesses in the 1990s, and has lent "billions" to him and to Kushner according to the New York Times.

The transactions, some of which involved Mr. Trump's now-defunct foundation, set off alerts in a computer system created to detect illicit activity, according to five current and former bank employees.

"Where did he get all of that cash? WRONG! It is because I didn't need money", Trump said in a series of tweets.

The report said ignoring the insider recommendation for action had more to do with the Deutsche Bank's taste for protecting relationships with valued clients.

The Times quoted a Deutsche Bank spokeswoman as saying investigators were not prevented from escalating activity identified as potentially suspicious.

"We have increased our anti-financial crime staff and enhanced our controls in recent years and take compliance with the anti-money-laundering laws very seriously", the Deutsche spokesman said.

The Kushner Companies said in a statement: "The New York Times tries to create scandalous stories which are totally false when they run out of things to write about". "In fact, we have no operating accounts with Deutsche Bank", she said.

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