Federal Investigators Now Looking Into Donations To Trump Inaugural Committee

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Prosecutors also are looking into whether donors to the inaugural fund gave money in hopes of gaining access to the administration or influence over policy or administration positions, which the Journal notes is illegal.

The inquiry into potential foreign donations to the inaugural fund and the super PAC is yet another front being pursued by multiple teams of prosecutors.

The investigation began partly because of information in the material seized in the federal probe of Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen.

It said that the chair of Trump's inaugural committee, Thomas Barrack Jr, who was interviewed by Mueller's office previous year, had met wealthy individuals close to the governments of both Qatar and the UAE.

The inaugural committee hasn't been asked for records or been contacted by prosecutors, according to a lawyer close to the matter, who said: "We are not aware of any evidence the investigation the Journal is reporting actually exists".

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The inquiry into the inaugural fund appears to involve prosecutors from USA attorney's offices in Manhattan and Brooklyn, people familiar with the investigation said.

Among the wealthy donors who gave a $1 million or more were casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, AT&T and Boeing. The fund has always been a source of infighting among White House advisers and personal friends of Trump's, who have blamed one another for news reports about questionable expenditures.

The inquiry is not the first time prosecutors have scrutinized Trump's inauguration.

The event-planning business of Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, a former unpaid adviser to Melania Trump, was the highest-paid vendor to the committee at $25.8m, the Journal reported.

His inaugural fund raised $107 million - four times as much as the pro-Trump political action committee and twice as much as the amount raised for President Barack Obama's first inauguration.

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Marcus Owens, the former head of the division of the Internal Revenue Service, said even doing business with Trump's hotels raises serious ethical red flags.

On Wednesday, Cohen was sentenced to three years in federal prison after pleading guilty to campaign finance violations, tax evasion and lying to Congress about Trump's past business dealings in Russian Federation.

"The (committee's) finances were fully audited internally and independently and are fully accounted".

Ivanka Trump connected Rick Gates, who acted as the deputy to the chairman of President Trump's inaugural committee, to the manager of the hotel, who suggested a price of $175,000 per day for hiring the hotel's presidential ballroom.

Investigators have asked witnesses whether any foreigners also contributed illegally to the inaugural committee.

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Hanna also said said that American Media Inc, publisher of the National Enquirer tabloid newspaper, admitted recently it made a $150,000 payment to McDougal "in concert" with Trump's presidential campaign as part of a deal to cooperate with prosecutors and avoid charges.