If anyone was going to be the Forrest Gump of the Russia investigation, we're lucky it was Guardian reporter Luke Harding. ... Now Harding has incorporated those stories, along with other relevant experiences -- such as the time the FSB broke into his home in Moscow, presumably to bug it, and left a book on sex and relationships on his bedside table -- into a book, Collusion: Secret Meetings, Dirty Money and How Russian Helped Donald Trump Win. Among its most interesting chapters is one relating to Tuesday's news that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has subpoenaed Trump's records with Deutsche Bank. In Collusion, Harding details Trump's attempts in 2008 to default on some $330 million he owed Deutsche Bank for its help financing the construction of the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago. The bank sued to force Trump to pay a portion of the debt: $40 million plus legal fees and interest.
This was the middle of the financial crisis, a fact Trump tried to leverage in court, arguing he should not have to repay money he owed Deutsche Bank because it was "one of the banks primarily responsible for the economic dysfunction we are currently facing."
In fact, Trump went on, because of the bank's role in creating this "once-in-a-century credit tsunami," Deutsche Bank owed him money, to the tune of $3 billion in damages.
Trump's case, of course, was thrown out. But that's where this story gets interesting: After a judge ordered Trump to repay the money he owed Deutsche Bank, Trump did it using money he borrowed from ... Deutsche Bank.
He paid the bank's real estate division back with money borrowed from its personal wealth division.
"The decision to keep lending to Trump was unusual, bizarre even. Deutsche Bank employees in New York were surprised. Asked whether it was normal to give money to a customer who was a bad credit risk and a litigant, one former senior Deutsche Bank staff member said: 'Are you --- kidding me?'"
"Most interesting of all, though, is what Harding goes on to detail: Around the same time Deutsche Bank's private wealth division was granting these extraordinary loans to Trump, business in the bank's new Moscow branch was booming, thanks to the fact that it owned basically all of the business of Vneshtorgbank, or VTB the Kremlin bank. (The then CEO of Goldman Sachs Moscow told Harding, "the nature and concentration of their business with VTB [was] quite galling. Nobody else could touch VTB.")
It would later emerge that during this time, Deutsche Bank Moscow was laundering billions of dollars for friends of the Kremlin, money that ultimately flowed through the bank's New York and London branches."
A lot more of the story at the link... some of this has been known for some time, but the article puts it in context.
No wonder Pres Trump drew the red line saying that Mr Mueller was not allowed to look at Pres Trump's finances. There appears to be a lot to see.
"After a judge ordered Trump to repay the money he owed Deutsche Bank, Trump did it using money he borrowed from... Deutsche Bank."
Actually, that's not unusual. If you borrow money from the bank, place it in an account, go bankrupt and have to pay creditors...if there is money left over from the borrowing will be dispersed to debts.
You can also take another loan to pay a loan with the same bank and establish a new contract.
While you are suing the bank for 3 billion dollars?
"... one former senior Deutsche Bank staff member said: Are you ------- kidding me?'"
I saw this yesterday. Good job posting it.
Seriously, who gives a personal guarantee on a $330 million loan for someone else out of the kindness of their heart?
Where are the Conservatives who want to go after Clinton for a donation to the Clinton Foundation?
"There are these two parallel lines," Harding says. "One is the capture of Deutsche Bank Moscow by VTB which is basically the FSB, the Russian spy agency. [VTB] practically took over Deutsche Bank Moscow. And the other line is Deutsche New York's extraordinary lending to Trump.
"Deutsche Bank New York, even though he sued them, even though he wrote them one of the most ridiculous writs in legal history, continued to lend very large sums to Trump, while simultaneously its Moscow division was running a I was going to say elaborate, but in fact it was actually quite crude large-scale money laundering scheme for Kremlin VIPs, who are still anonymous, from which Deutsche Bank London and Deutsche Bank New York made big profits," he says."
Kremlin VIPs... these are the guys hurt by the sanctions that are laundering their money through this bank that is funding Trump. They are also the guys who fund the lawyer that Trump Jr and Kushner met with who was all about getting rid of these sanctions.
Actually, that's not unusual
Actually, it is.
If you borrow money from the bank, place it in an account, go bankrupt and have to pay creditors...if there is money left over from the borrowing will be dispersed to debts.
That sentence makes no sense.
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