In new revelations in court, New York state Attorney General Letitia James has exposed some of the context of the break-up between Donald Trump and his longtime lender, Deutsche Bank.
Over the course of a decade, the bank loaned Trump over $400 million in connection to properties from Chicago to southern Florida. As James tells it, after having sought information from the bank during her civil investigation into the Trump Organization, three executives at Deutsche Bank formally decided to end the bank’s active relationship with Trump in a May 2021 Skype call. This decision followed months without a substantive response from Trump or his legal team regarding issues raised in earlier stages of James’s investigation. In short, the bank was concerned about the prospect of having been deceived by financial statements from Trump that significantly misstated the values of certain assets. The bank used these statements from the now former president in making decisions about what financing to provide.
In the middle of December 2020, a lawyer for Deutsche Bank outlined Trump’s formal obligations in response to an inconclusive missive from Trump Organization lawyer Alan Garten. “As you know, Donald J. Trump is required under the terms of his loan guarantees to provide annual financial statements to Deutsche Bank and to ensure that those statements ‘are true and correct in all material respects,'” as Gregory Candela outlined it. Candela also restated the bank’s demand for further information on issues raised in the James probe, adding the bank would use provided details to examine “whether an event of default may have occurred.” Garten replied with a brief message promising a thorough response, which never arrived. “I’m following up on the emails below,” Candela wrote on January 8 of last year. “Will you please let me know when we can expect a response? Thank you.” That was essentially it, James reveals — the bank didn’t obtain its requested information. Instead, it decided to end its Trump connection.
“As a result of the Trump Organization’s failure to respond, Deutsche Bank decided to exit its relationship with the company,” a filing from James says. Trump has now dealt with most of his outstanding debt from Deutsche Bank loans, although Trump apparently still has some $45 million in debt tied to the financial institution. James is suing Trump for his misstatements to lenders and tax authorities, seeking the return of $250 million she connected to deceptive statements of value. She has previously addressed the potential impacts on everyday Americans. “Trump’s crimes are not victimless,” James remarked late last month. “When the well-connected and powerful break the law to get more money than they are entitled to, it reduces resources available to working people, small businesses, and taxpayers.”