Sometime in 1999, construction begins on Trump World Tour in Manhattan, directly across from the United Nations. Donald Trump, facing multiple bankruptcies and billions in debt, doesn’t pay the costs himself. The project is financed by two German banks: Deutsche Bank and Hypo- und Vereinsbank.
Hypo- und Vereinsbank is actually an operation of UniCredit Bank, which plead guilty in 2019 to “conspiring to violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) and to defraud the United States by processing hundreds of millions of dollars of transactions through the U.S. financial system” on behalf of Iran.
If Deutsche Bank sounds familiar, it should. The bank has been tied to countless criminals across the globe, most recently Jeffrey Epstein. The bank paid a $150 million fine in July 2020 for overlooking hundreds of alarm-ringing transactions by Epstein, even after Epstein’s attorney (who had access to the account) requested information on how to withdraw funds without hitting any radars.
As CNN reports: “The suspicious transactions flagged by the regulator included payments to individuals who were publicly alleged to have been Epstein’s co-conspirators in sexually abusing young women — as well as payments to Russian models, school tuitions for several women, hotel expenses and direct payments to numerous women with Eastern European last names.”
In 2019, German prosecutors launched a money laundering investigation that included raiding the homes of Deutsche Bank clients.
Alan Lapidus, a former architect for Trump projects, told ForeignPolicy.com in December 2018 that, as Donald Trump’s financial struggles became worse, “he could not get anybody in the United States to lend him anything. It was all coming out of Russia. His involvement with Russia was deeper than he’s acknowledged.”