The state on Tuesday launched an investigation into President Trump following an explosive report alleging that he and his family cooked up fraudulent financial schemes to help their parents dodge millions in taxes.
Trump pocketed at least $413 million in today’s dollars from his father Fred’s real estate business, The New York Times reported, citing a “vast trove” of confidential tax return and financial records.
“The Tax Department is reviewing the allegations in the NYT article and is vigorously pursuing all appropriate avenues of investigation,” the department said in a statement.
The Times report said that much of that fortune came to Trump because he helped his parents evade taxes, setting up a fake corporation with his siblings to disguise millions of dollars in gifts from their mom and dad.
During his presidential campaign, Trump promoted himself as a self-made real estate mogul who started out with only a “very small” loan from his father.
The paper said its findings were based on more than 200 tax returns from Fred Trump, his companies and various Trump partnerships and trusts.
The records did not include Trump’s personal tax returns, which he has refused to release, breaking with decades of precedent.
Trump lawyer Charles Harder denied the report — and pointed the finger at other relatives and the financial “professionals” the family hired.
“President Trump had virtually no involvement whatsoever with these matters,” he told the paper.
“The affairs were handled by other Trump family members who were not experts themselves and therefore relied entirely upon the aforementioned licensed professionals to ensure full compliance with the law.”
The White House said that the financial matters had been approved by the IRS, while slamming the media for attacking the president.
“Many decades ago the IRS reviewed and signed off on these transactions,” read a statement from spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
“The New York Times’ and other media outlets‘ credibility with the American people is at an all time low because they are consumed with attacking the president and his family.”
The paper said the report was based on interviews with Fred Trump’s former employees and advisers and more than 100,000 pages of documents describing the inner workings of his business empire.
“The investigation also draws on tens of thousands of pages of confidential records — bank statements, financial audits, accounting ledgers, cash disbursement reports, invoices and canceled checks,” the Times said.