GQ has found a federal court filing from this summer alleging that a diamond company, which licensed Ivanka Trump’s name in exchange for royalties, was used in a $100 million money-laundering scheme. Though the subpoena (intended to discover purchases made by alleged shell companies for a foreign lawsuit) does not implicate Trump, it adds to the cast of shady foreign actors who’ve allegedly hid their money via companies bearing the Trump name. Moreover it begs the question: why does this keep happening?
The Commercial Bank of Dubai has subpoenaed several companies, and it alleges that the Al-Saris, a family of well-known Emirati oil traders, owed the bank repayment for a $118 million loan, defaulted on their debt, and hid their money through shell companies which purchased, for instance, diamonds. Red Flag #1: Some of those may have come from Madison Avenue Diamonds, which at the time operated under the name “Ivanka Trump Fine Jewelry” in a typical Trump-name licensing agreement.
Red Flag #2: The Emirati government owns part of the Commercial Bank of Dubai, which was established by royal decree.
Meanwhile–against the advice of senior officials–Donald Trump has supported the United Arab Emirates in its opposition to Qatar, saying that Qatar has “historically been a funder of terrorism,” and took credit for organizing a blockade by neighbors such as Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates, to force Qatar citizens to leave and to ban their citizens from entering Qatar. Trump’s speech took place on June 10th, and the initial documents by the part-Emirati owned Commercial Bank of Dubai were filed on June 29th. The blockade has been called a diplomatic crisis; a business connection to the Emirati government (though secondary) is not helpful.
Red Flag #3: Add more creeps to the Trump family cabal. Ivanka Trump started the Ivanka Trump Fine Jewelry line with Moshe Lax, diamond heir and owner of Madison Avenue Diamonds; Lax is known in the business as a “career grifter,” according to a balls out insane report in Politico Magazine, and allegedly owes millions to vendors, and has extorted fellow Orthodox Jews. Lax continues to attend Trump events and visit Trump Tower, and Red Flag #4, she met Jared at his networking luncheon.
It’s perhaps not as troubling (or, overt) as the fact that Ivanka’s business is booming under the Trump presidency from products made in China and India, Kellyanne Conway plugging her products, Jared repeatedly failing to disclose financial information, the many Trump-licensed real estate holdings used for similar purposes, and an Iran business partner exempt from sanctions. But with all that, it’s hard to chalk this up to another example of the usual excuse, which is mere idiocy.