Trump Held Fundraiser For Pam Bondi At Mar-a-Lago After She Dropped Investigation – Huffington Post
Allegations of fraud by Trump University and its predecessor Trump Institute began before Bondi took office in 2011. The previous Florida attorney general, Bill McCollum, had received numerous complaints from attendees of Trump’s real estate programs. According to those attendees, Trump had promised classes and mentoring that never materialized, and when customers complained, the organization refused to give refunds.
One attendee, Sheila Roberts, contacted McCollum’s office in 2009 when she did not receive a refund of almost $2,000. Roberts told The Huffington Post that she felt the office handled her complaint appropriately.
“I did get my money back, so no problem there,” she said. Roberts added that she is voting for Trump.
But for many unhappy customers of the real estate seminars, refunds were few and far between.
Carol Minto of Connecticut said the Trump Institute, which is based in Florida, refused to honor her refund. She reported the matter to the attorneys general of both Florida and Connecticut, but only heard back from the latter, who helped her get her money back.
“Trump holds himself out to be this great person in real estate, and I wanted to learn how I could buy and sell properties just like him,” Minto told HuffPost. “And he didn’t even turn up. He just had a picture of himself [at the seminar].”
When Bondi was elected attorney general, the broader question of what to do about all the Trump Institute complaints ― and whether Florida could or should join pending lawsuits ― had yet to be resolved. As late as Sept. 14, 2013, Bondi’s spokesman said that the office was reviewing the allegations “to see if they have any relevance in Florida.”
But around that time, Bondi personally solicited Trump for a political donation. On Sept. 17, the real estate mogul’s charitable foundation wrote the $25,000 check to the Bondi-backing PAC named And Justice For All. (The check proved to be a violation of Internal Revenue Service rules for tax-exempt nonprofits. Trump recently paid a $2,500 penalty.)