The New York Times reports:
The Saudi royal family showered Donald J. Trump and his entourage on his first trip abroad as president with dozens of presents, including three robes made with white tiger and cheetah fur, and a dagger with a handle that appeared to be ivory. Little that followed went right.
A White House lawyer determined that possession of the furs and dagger most likely violated the Endangered Species Act, but the Trump administration held onto them and failed to disclose them as gifts received from a foreign government.
On the last full day of Mr. Trump’s presidency, the White House handed them over to the General Services Administration — the wrong agency — rather than the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which seized the gifts this summer. At that point, there was a surprise. The furs, from an oil-rich family worth billions of dollars, were fake.
Read the full article. The State Department is also investigating whether Trump appointees walked off with thousands of dollars worth of gift bags meant for foreign dignitaries. The bags were to be distributed at a G7 summit that was canceled due to COVID.
NEW: The exchange of gifts between the Trump White House and foreign governments was a mess. Among many issues: Saudis gave Trump WH white tiger and cheetah furs that @USFWS Office of Law Enforcement has now discovered were fakes that had been dyed. https://t.co/etsF4wivFa
— Michael S. Schmidt (@nytmike) October 11, 2021