Federal Prosecutors Investigating Trump Inaugural Fund: Report

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan are examining whether President Trump’s 2017 inaugural committee “misspent” some of the $107 million it raised from donations, The Wall Street Journal reports. The probe from the U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan is reportedly probing whether donors to the committee “gave money in exchange for access to the incoming Trump administration, concessions or to influence official administration positions.” The investigation was prompted by materials taken from Trump’s formal personal attorney Michael Cohen in a separate probe into his “business dealings,” the newspaper reports. More specifically, a recorded conversation between Cohen and former Melania Trump adviser Stephanie Winston Wolkoff—who worked on inaugural events—is reportedly under scrutiny. In the conversation, Wolkoff reportedly “expressed concern about how the inaugural committee was spending money.”

According to the Journal, the committee has not yet been contacted by prosecutors and told the newspaper they were unaware of “any evidence the investigation… actually exists.” The committee has reportedly identified vendors that account for only $61 million of the over $100 million spent. The committee’s head, Tom Barrack, has reportedly been questioned by special counsel Robert Mueller about the inaugural fund.