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BOMBSHELL: On Debate Night, Post Uncovers Potential Trump Tax Fraud

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BOMBSHELL: On Debate Night, Post Uncovers Potential Trump Tax Fraud

A new investigation may have found what Trump is trying to conceal by refusing to release his tax returns.

Documents uncovered by Washington Post’s investigative reporter David Fahrenthold, who has been researching and reporting on Donald Trump’s charitable foundation and his personal finances, suggest Trump may have directed payments to his foundation in an act of possible tax evasion.

According to the report, “Donald Trump charitable foundation has received approximately $2.3 million from companies that owed money to Donald Trump or one of his businesses but were instructed to pay the foundation instead, according to people familiar with the transactions.” This could be criminal tax fraud.

The laws governing the diversion of income into a foundation were written, in part, to stop charity leaders from funneling income that should be taxed into a charity and then using that money to benefit themselves. Such violations can bring monetary penalties, the loss of tax-exempt status, and even criminal charges in extreme cases.

“You cannot take money that you earned, that’s your income, and direct it elsewhere” without paying taxes, said Ellen Aprill, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. “If you do it, you have to treat it as your income, and you have to pay tax on it first.”

Some readers took to Twitter to comment on the report:

trump-tax-evaon

The only formal admission of wrongdoing by the Trump Foundation so far this year came when Trump paid a $2,500 penalty for an illegal $25,000 donation in 2013 to a political group controlled by Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi. The foundation has said the gift was an error, and Bondi has said it had no bearing on her office’s decision not to pursue a fraud investigation of Trump University.

There’s only one way to know for certain whether Trump has complied with the law: release his tax returns for public scrutiny.

H/T: Washington Post.

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