Former Trump University employees allege fraud in class action lawsuit

Former Trump University employees allege fraud in class action lawsuit

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By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=17763607

Washington (Talk Media News) – Recently released affidavits by former Trump University employees enjoined in a class-action suit against the mogul’s real estate school allege fraudulent marketing practices and substandard instruction.

Those claims were further bolstered Tuesday when a federal judge ordered the release of university “playbooks” which seem to suggest the school operated as venture capital marketing instrument rather than an educational institution.

Plaintiffs in the class action allege many of the instructors had little or no background in real estate and that students were constantly pressured to sign up for additional courses regardless of ability to pay.

It is also alleged that students were encouraged to rack up debt via credit card maximization and that some of those individuals may have also been indigent or even homeless.

Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton slammed Trump for taking “advantage of vulnerable” citizens who emptied out their bank accounts to attend the University. She called Trump a “fraud.”

Trump said he will win the lawsuit and has refused to settle the case.

Some of the plaintiffs said they felt so guilty about their complicity in the alleged scam that they decided to resign.

Ronald Schnackenberg, who was a former sales manager at the university, is of that disposition. Schnackenberg told CNN he was sanctioned for not forcefully advocating that an elderly couple use their disability income and a home equity loan to pay for $35,000 in tuition.

Similar allegations have been made by other plaintiffs and have helped foster the impression that the university was largely designed to line Trump’s pockets.

But the now defunct institution has long been a source of conflict and controversy.

In 2011, New York State began investigating the university after receiving complaints alleging dubious business practices and in 2013 subsequently filed a $40 million suit. The following year Trump was legally censured for operating the institution without proper credentials as New York never officially designed the school as a university.

Also in 2014, San Diego federal judge Gonzalo P. Curiel permitted Californians to participate in an entirely separate class-action suit against the university. That trial is scheduled for late November.

 

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