02 March, 2018
The family real estate business of Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law, received more than half a billion dollars in loans from companies whose leaders attended private White House meetings with him past year, the New York Times reported late Wednesday.
Apollo spokesman Charles Zehren told the paper Harris was not involved in the decision to loan money to Kushner Cos.
According to the report, Joshua Harris, the founder of Apollo Management - whose loan refinanced the mortgage on Kushner's Chicago skyscraper - who was advising Trump administration on infrastructure policy, also met with Jared Kushner previous year.
If the Kushners have nothing to hide, they certainly don't act like it; on February 9, Kushner Cos. filed a motion in federal court for a new venue for its Maryland apartment complex case in an attempt to avoid revealing the identities of the project's investors. During that time, The New York Times reports, Kushner and the company executive met multiple times.
There is little precedent for a top White House official meeting with executives of companies as they contemplate sizable loans to his business, say government ethics experts.
It also stated that information regarding the family members was also requested.
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.
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It was a few months after those meetings that Apollo loaned Kushner Companies $184 million to refinance a mortgage on a Chicago building, the newspaper said.
Kushner stepped down from the family company a year ago when he joined Trump's administration.
A spokeswoman for Kushner Cos., Christine Taylor, said, "We have not received a copy of any letter from the New York State Department of Financial Services". In Ivanka's case, it's mostly just a matter of fairness, but recent reports indicate Kushner's dilettante diplomacy could be putting USA national security at risk. "Stories like these attempt to make insinuating connections that do not exist to disparage the financial institutions and companies involved", she said.
Kushner's tenure in the White House has been dogged by questions about conflicts of interest between his government work and his family business, in which he remains heavily invested. But he retains a stake in parts of the business, according to his most recent financial-disclosure form.
Peter Mirijanian, a spokesperson for Lowell, said in a statement that Kushner "has met with hundreds of business people". In Kushner's case, a permanent clearance wasn't coming anytime soon; according to the Washington Post, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had warned the White House on February 9 that recent revelations in Kushner's background investigation "could be an obstacle to his clearance process". The inquiries ask for information from banks about their relationships with Mr. Kushner, including his bank accounts and loans, they said.
"Our company is a multibillion enterprise that is extremely financially strong".