The feds now own a condo in Trump Tower, thanks to Paul Manafort
Posted May 30, 2019 5:50 p.m. EDT
CNN — The federal government now owns condo 43G in Trump Tower because of the Mueller investigation, a judge certified Thursday.
Judge Amy Berman Jackson's order was the final move seizing the apartment from former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his wife Kathleen after he admitted to illegal foreign lobbying and money laundering and was convicted by a jury of fraud and other financial crimes during the Mueller probe.
Manafort is now serving a prison sentence in western Pennsylvania.
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Manafort bought the 1,500-square foot, 2-bed, 2.5-bath Fifth Avenue condo more than a decade ago for $3.675 million through a shell company that hid his riches from US authorities. He used it as a home base for years when he traveled to New York and when he led the Trump campaign. His residence there was even part of Manafort's pitch to Trump to hire him in 2016, according to The New York Times.
In 2015, Manafort and his wife mortgaged it for $3 million, when his long-successful Ukrainian lobbying business dried up.
He had paid off none of the mortgage, according to court filings.
UBS Bank will get repaid nearly in full once the US Marshals Service sells the condo, and the US government will pay back condominium charges to the Trump Tower condo board, which is run by employees of the Trump Organization, as part of a forfeiture deal.
In all, the government has seized several of Manafort's properties and will sell them to pay off his debts to banks and other expenses. The US government will reap $11 million from the Manafort forfeiture after paying back his debtors, plus the government will receive back taxes Manafort owed to the IRS and court fines.