The attorney general for the District of Columbia on Wednesday sued President Donald Trump’s official inaugural committee, as well as the Trump Organization and the Trump International Hotel in Washington, alleging they worked together to illegally enrich the Trump family business.
The suit claims that the nonprofit inaugural committee violated laws barring the use of charitable funds to enrich private individuals when it agreed to pay Trump’s hotel more than $1 million for the use of ballroom space during the January 2017 inaugural festivities.
The lawsuit alleges that the Trump inaugural committee knowingly misused its funds when it paid $175,000 per day to reserve the ballroom of the Trump hotel for four days during the president’s inauguration week but held only two events there, one of which was only for Trump’s adult children and their guests.
“District law requires nonprofits to use their funds for their stated public purpose, not to benefit private individuals or companies,” said District of Columbia Attorney General Karl Racine in a statement Wednesday. “In this case, we are seeking to recover the nonprofit funds that were improperly funneled directly to the Trump family business.”
According to the legal complaint, the contract the Presidential Inaugural Committee, or PIC, had with the Trump Hotel for event space “violated the PIC’s articles of incorporation by causing the PIC to pay amounts to the Trump Hotel that were unfair, unreasonable and unjustified and that acted ultimately to confer improper private benefit on the Trump Entities.”