New York's banking and insurance regulator has asked Deutsche Bank and two NY lenders for information related to their dealings with Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump's son-in-law and a White House senior adviser, according to a person familiar with the investigation, but who is not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.
White House senior adviser Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerKushner resisting giving up top access amid scrutiny over security clearances: report Kelly says he has "full confidence" in Kushner on foreign policy White House: Security clearance review won't affect Kushner MORE's family business received millions of dollars in loans from two companies after they took part in White House meetings, according to The New York Times.
Even by the standards of Apollo, one of the world's largest private equity firms, the previously unreported transaction with the Kushners was a big deal: It was triple the size of the average property loan made by Apollo's real estate lending arm, securities filings show.
The job never materialized, but in November, Apollo lent $184 million (U.S.) to Kushner's family real estate firm, Kushner Cos. $325 million last spring after CEO Michael Corbat met with Kushner in the White House, reportedly to discuss financial and trade policy.
In both cases, there was no direct proof of a quid-pro-quo relationship between Kushner and the two executives approving his loans, The Times noted. "These types of inquiries appear to be harassment exclusively for political reasons".
Earlier this month, Bloomberg LP reported both the IRS and U.S. Department of Justice subpoenaed lenders and investors involved with Kushner family properties in NY and New Jersey, some dating back as far as 2010. He was among the Trump campaign members involved in a controversial July 2016 Trump Tower meeting with a Russian lawyer who emails suggested promised damaging information on Hillary Clinton. According to government financial disclosures from past year, he has lines of credit at the three banks, among others.
It said Joshua Harris, a founder of Apollo, was advising Trump administration officials on infrastructure policy and held several meetings with Kushner.
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A Citigroup spokesperson, Danielle Romero-Apsilos, said Kushner Cos. had been a bank client before the election and the relationship had no connection to Kushner's White House role.
Apollo defended its move in extending the loan to Kushner to the New York Times.
The couple sold off some of their assets before starting their White House jobs past year, but Kushner still has stake in hundreds of companies.
His clearance was reduced to the level of secret and his official portfolio inside the West Wing, especially with regard to his globe-trotting foreign affairs work on behalf of Mr Trump, is expected to be sharply reduced as well, the sources said.
Ethics experts have long frowned on the idea of senior administration officials with active corporate activities because of potential conflicts of interests.
"Now obviously, there's important context here, in terms of what's going on with Jared Kushner and concerns about him in the White House", Maddow reminded.