The New York Attorney General’s office Monday said that the Donald J. Trump Foundation has informed the state that it had ceased fundraising – in compliance with an order issued by the state last month – but would need more time to file paperwork detailing the money it solicited in the state, the Washington Post reported.
The attorney general’s office issued the order after it was found that the foundation had been raising outside money without being properly registered to do so under state law. A broader investigation is underway by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman after reports that the foundation engaged in other activities that appeared to be in violation of state charity law.
A spokesman for Schneiderman would not comment on the timeframe of the extension, or whether the new deadline would be before or after the election. In the letter sent Sept. 30, the agency requested the foundation submit annual financial reports for every year it was fundraising outside money without the proper certification, which, according to a Washington Post report, it has done for at least the last decade.
Had the foundation been properly registered to solicit outside donations, it would have been required to undergo annual audits by an independent auditor, who would have maybe noticed the other activities the foundation has engaged in over the years that are now being raised as possible legal violations. Among other things, it appears Trump used foundation money for transactions known as self-dealing, for instance settling legal matters or buying self-portraits that benefitted him or his businesses, rather than the charity. Self-dealing is a major no-no in the charity world, and legal experts say its rare to see a foundation engaged in such acts as frequently and blatantly as Trump’s did.