It’s a well-known fact that Donald Trump does not have nearly the empire he’d like to pretend he does. His business mostly consists of leasing his name to be used on buildings that belong to other people, and a management service that runs hotels.
One such building, the Trump International Hotel in Panama, has been the center of a legal dispute between the Trump Organization and the building’s new majority owner, who wants to remove the Trump name and management from the building.
Now, the dispute has actually come to fistfights in the hallways and lobby, with the police being called on numerous occasions. ABC News recently acquired video of one of the incidents:
Video obtained by ABC News shows a scuffle break out between Trump Organization security and building security at the Trump International Hotel in Panama, amid an escalating legal dispute between Trump's company and the building's majority owner. https://t.co/wa61MgnM1r pic.twitter.com/PeCwFY441L
— ABC News (@ABC) March 2, 2018
Reactions on social media mostly seemed to hold Trump accountable:
‘In addition to battling each other in the building’s lobby, the owner has been fighting Trump in a U.S. District Court. In a case filed in January, majority owner Orestes Fintiklis accused the Trump Organization of trying to bully the property’s owners into abandoning a plan to terminate the management agreement with the Trumps.
‘According to the complaint, Trump was trying “to create a circus by threatening Plaintiffs (and others) with baseless fraud and conspiracy claims that entirely lack merit and have already been rejected by the Panamanian courts.”
‘“In other words,” the lawsuit says, “Trump is being Trump.”’
Whether directly or indirectly, Trump’s decision-making is at fault for the core dispute. After all, if he hadn’t ran for president, raising his own profile with various disgusting and outrageous comments along the way, the building’s new owners likely wouldn’t be so eager to disassociate themselves with his image and brand.
It remains to be seen how Trump’s White House tenure will impact his business interests in the long term. If he ends up disgraced, in prison, or found with dirty assets, he’s likely to lose everything. His brand his also heavily dependent on his personal image, which has suffered since he decided he would be able to run a country like one of his failing businesses. Yet at the same time, his ownership of luxury hospitality buildings and golf courses allow ample opportunity for grift, inside dealing, and foreign influence, so he might walk away with a fair bit of cash.
Featured image via Win McNamee/Getty Images