PANAMA: Trump Building Tied To Russian Mafia

The Hill reports:

Investors and customers of the Trump Ocean Club International Hotel and Tower in Panama City carried deep ties to organized crime and drug trafficking, according to an NBC News and Reuters joint investigation.

A Brazillian real estate salesman who partnered with the Trumps to attract condo buyers for the tower told NBC that the Trumps and others connected to the project were unaware that he was attracting shady investors to the project, but that they never asked any questions.

“I had some customers with questionable backgrounds,” said Alexandre Ventura Nogueira, who spoke to NBC on camera but under disguise from an undisclosed European city.

More from Reuters:

It was not his job to check the source of money that investors used to buy units in the Trump Ocean Club, Nogueira said. “I didn’t know the money was coming from anything illegal. As long as they were doing wire transfers and not cash, I wasn’t worried about the source of it.”

Nogueira said that no one asked him about the source of funds. “Nobody ever asked me. The banks didn’t ask. The developers didn’t ask. The Trump Organization didn’t ask me. Nobody asked me: ‘Who are the customers? Where did the money come from?’”

And from NBC News:

Ivanka Trump is featured in a promotional video for the Trump Ocean Club, made in 2011, in which she praises “the beautiful pool decks” and “our 10,000-square-foot spa.”

“Buenos días,” she says in the video. “Hello, I’m Ivanka Trump. Welcome to Trump Ocean Club International Hotel and Tower, Panama, rising 70 stories above the glistening Panama Bay. We’ve taken inspiration from the beauty that surrounds us to create a new landmark for Panama.” She goes on to discuss such details as the “tropical color palette” and the carvings on the guestroom headboards.

“The Trump Organization has to approve everything because of his name on the project,” Ventura said, describing the project as Ivanka Trump’s “baby.”