Donald Trump | Eric Schneiderman | New York | News

Donald Trump Sued For $40M Over Fake 'University': VIDEO

Donald-trumpReal estate "mogul" and reality TV entrepreneur Donald Trump is being sued for $40 million by the New York State Attorney General's office over "Trump University", an allegedly false university that lured students in with promises of wealth. According to the suit, all students got were expensive seminars and promises of apprenticeships that often went unfulfilled. 

New York AG Eric Schneiderman told the AP that:

"Trump University engaged in deception at every stage of consumers' advancement through costly programmes and caused real financial harm. Trump University, with Donald Trump's knowledge and participation, relied on Trump's name recognition and celebrity status to take advantage of consumers who believed in the Trump brand."

Schneiderman also told members of the press that many of the "university's" 5,000 students, who paid up to $35,000 a piece in tuition costs, thought that they might at least get to briefly shake Trump's hand at some point during the program. Instead, they got to take a photo next to a life size cardboard cutout. 

Of course, Trump and his attorney Michael Cohen are dismissing the lawsuit as largely political. "The attorney general has been angry because he felt that Mr Trump and his various companies should have done much more for him in terms of fundraising," Cohen said. "This entire investigation is politically motivated and it is a tremendous waste of taxpayers' money." Trump has also started a new website attacking Schneiderman, claiming, in all caps, that:


SchneidermanAccording to AP, Trump University has already been in trouble with the state for years. State education department officials told Trump and company to change the school's name back in 2011, saying that it lacked the proper accreditation to call itself a "university". It has since been renamed as the Trump Entrepreneur Institute, bearing its original name as a "nickname". It has also been "dogged" by civil complaints and isolated lawsuits for years beforehand. Scneiderman's lawsuit itself convers complaints ranging from 2005 to 2011 on behalf of students who paid anywhere between $1,495 and $35,000. 

"Scheiderman said the three-day seminars did not, as promised, teach consumers everything they needed to know about real estate. The Trump University manual tells instructors not to let consumers 'think three days will be enough to make them successful', Schneiderman said.

"At the seminars, consumers were told about 'Trump Elite' mentorships that cost $10,000 to $35,000. Students were promised individual instruction until they made their first deal. Schneiderman said participants were urged to extend the limit on their credit cards for real estate deals, but then used the credit to pay for the Trump Elite programmes. The attorney-general said the program also failed to promptly cancel memberships as promised."

On paper, these practices led to charges of "persistent fraud, illegal and deceptive conduct and violating federal consumer protection law." According to the suit, many students were unable to use their "apprenticeships" to land even one deal, leaving them with thousands in credit card debt without a way to pay those debts off. As for Trump's claims of the lawsuit having political motivation, Schneiderman says that it's actually Trump who has the political motivations. Spokesman Andrew Friedman told the AP that, "the fact that he's still brave enough to follow the investigation wherever it may lead speaks to Mr Schneiderman's character."

Schneiderman also explained in an interview with CNN that the lawsuit came as part of a statewide investigation of for-profit universities in general.

You can watch that interview AFTER THE JUMP...


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  1. anyone dumb enough to go to Trump University...

    Posted by: JWL | Aug 26, 2013 1:45:09 PM

  2. Ha! This reminds me of that Simpsons episode where Bart goes to Kamp Krusty and after a harrowing ordeal they're supposed to meet Krusty the Klown and itstead its Barney dressed as Krusty.

    Posted by: Dave P. | Aug 26, 2013 1:46:11 PM

  3. Ha! This reminds me of that Simpsons episode where Bart goes to Kamp Krusty and after a harrowing ordeal they're supposed to meet Krusty the Klown and itstead its Barney dressed as Krusty.

    Posted by: Dave P. | Aug 26, 2013 1:46:11 PM

  4. You'd think that a guy worth billions could afford a better hairpiece, but I guess not.

    Posted by: FuryOfFirestorm | Aug 26, 2013 1:47:49 PM

  5. We should also be suing The Donald for the eco-disastrous hair-like substance that keeps appearing on top of his head. It has, by itself, caused the ozone layer to shrink demonstrably (in horror). What IS That?

    Posted by: Geoff | Aug 26, 2013 1:49:10 PM

  6. Trump, like Kris Kardashian, is a weapon of mass distraction funded by corporations, corp media & congress-- dont drink the koolaid, look behind the curtain, people!

    Posted by: really? | Aug 26, 2013 2:09:40 PM

  7. I sure hope this doesn't ruin his chance of becoming President of the USA. LOL!!!

    Posted by: andrew | Aug 26, 2013 2:14:32 PM

  8. Exactly, JWL.

    I'm glad they're trying to shut it down, but who'd be dumb enough to think "Trump University" was anything but another scam by a well-known snake-oil salesman in the first place?

    Posted by: Caliban | Aug 26, 2013 2:23:05 PM

  9. The charges are trumped up? How appropriate.

    Everything that Trump does is some variety of a fake. He used his name to get a tower in Baja built, then, when the project went under, he claimed that they only licensed his name. He opened massive casinos and, when they went bankrupt, the bond holders were left with the losses.

    He is a genius at branding and has turned "Trump" into a synonym for wealth and luxury. Unfortunately, only the naive, poor, and uneducated fall for his malarkey.

    I can't want until his real estate becomes a house of cards.

    Posted by: gr8guya | Aug 26, 2013 2:25:02 PM

  10. Sounds like another bankruptcy is looming for ol Badger Head. Macy's must be so proud to have him as a spokesman and sell his cheap, crappy suits.

    Posted by: PDX Guy | Aug 26, 2013 2:34:59 PM

  11. Can you imagine the poor deluded,dimwit-suckers who think they want a "Trump Elite Mentorship"??

    Posted by: Daniel Berry, NYC | Aug 26, 2013 2:38:45 PM

  12. what comes around, goes around eh? Donald you FOOL! Gets what he deserves.

    Posted by: Tom | Aug 26, 2013 2:42:11 PM

  13. I'm no Trump fan, but come on. Trump University? If you're naive enough to think this is a good choice for you, you probably shouldn't be going to college in the first place.

    Posted by: NYCer | Aug 26, 2013 3:19:17 PM

  14. Trump will just yell, scream and belittle.

    His interview on GMA with George S. was ABC. George did everything but call Trump your highness and allowed the Donald to just rant and ramble. It was sad.

    Posted by: QJ201 | Aug 26, 2013 3:42:13 PM

  15. How much longer are we going to be forced to hear about this bloated huckster? Not a rant about Towleroad, but at media in general. I don't know why he hasn't 'Palined' out by now and disappeared from our collective radar. He adds no value to our culture or country and I can't wait until he's a dim memory.

    Posted by: Princely | Aug 26, 2013 4:29:06 PM

  16. I've said it time and time again that Trump is a huckster, a snake oil salesman, a grifter of the greatest magnitude. He's a modern day P.T. Barnum, whether it's politics, real estate or the media, Trump proves that there is in fact a sucker born every minute and he has no qualms about relieving them of their money. This Trump real estate course scam is as old as real estate sales itself. One of the best at it was the famous "buy real estate with nothing down guru" Carleton Sheets among hundreds of others promising get rich quick real estate deals.

    If anyone is stupid enough to get involved with Donald Trump, they deserve what they get or should I say lose. The man is a liar and a scamster par excellence.

    Posted by: Bob R | Aug 26, 2013 5:07:11 PM

  17. What. Is with. Her hair?

    Posted by: WillowBay | Aug 26, 2013 5:47:25 PM

  18. Where's his birth certificate? I don't care where he was born, but I want proof he's really human.

    Posted by: graphicjack | Aug 26, 2013 6:09:50 PM

  19. I really do feel sorry for the people who fell for this. I wonder if he is a sociopath, otherwise how does he sleep at night ? ?

    Posted by: Tristram | Aug 27, 2013 12:10:08 AM

  20. Trump is what's known as a grifter. In his case he sells his 'brand' [name recognition] to other grifters.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Aug 27, 2013 9:27:06 AM

  21. Didn't they read the fine print?

    A lot of people lose their day jobs and feel forced to go into real estate, and then they go to training seminars on how to sell real estate. Most of it is straightforward, but some think that anything by Trump will give them an edge. He used to sell books with essentially the same self-help message for those entering real estate, but obviously that wasn't earning enough moolah for him. Were the people who bought his books defrauded? Well, for $8, yes, but not $30K, so I guess there's a substantial difference. However, many college degrees are equally unsubstantial.

    Posted by: anon | Aug 27, 2013 10:18:23 AM

  22. Oh, dear. I hope this doesn't cause trouble for RuPaul...LOL.

    Posted by: Wavin' Dave | Aug 27, 2013 1:12:39 PM

  23. Fake university, fake hair.. What ever :D

    Posted by: mmike1969 | Aug 27, 2013 2:46:23 PM

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