Jared Kushner, the publisher of the New York paper Observer, is an old hand at defending those near and dear to him who have become enmeshed in the American criminal justice system. He tried to keep his father out of jail, but eventually Charles Kushner

pled guilty to eighteen felony counts of tax fraud, election violations, and witness tampering. In the strangest twist, Charles admitted to taking revenge on a hated brother-in-law by secretly setting up him up with a prostitute, then taping the encounter. He spent sixteen months behind bars for his crimes.

That was in 2009, so Jared had a few years respite before today, when “a federal judge certified a RICO class action” against his father-in-law, Trump University president and soon to be United States president Donald Trump. The class action will argue that Trump “misrepresent[ed] Trump University… to make tens of millions of dollars but deliver[ed] neither Donald Trump nor a university.”

(And that’s just the class action. Don’t even talk about the

court battle [Trump just lost] against New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman when a judge ruled that Trump was personally liable for running the university without a license.

Schneiderman accused Trump of fraud, claiming he had cheated students out of $40 million. New York Supreme Court Justice Cynthia Kern found that Trump and Michael Saxton, who served as the school’s president, knew that the university was being run without a license.

A determination of damages in that case is pending.)

This latest effort on Jared’s part (read the badly timed editorial in his paper here – I mean, badly timed because a day after Kushner published it the RICO thing happened) to keep a family member out of the hands of the justice system has a wonderfully DeLilloesque postmodernity to it, with Trump insisting that after all Trump University was bogus and the class action people ought to have known this:

[Trump argued that anyone] could have known as early as July 2009 that Trump University was not an actual university…

It’s possible that Trump – and his son-in-law – and maybe his son-in-law’s paper – know, as of today, that the Attorney General’s case against Trump and his namesake university is actual.


UPDATE: Though there’s not much his son-in-law’s paper can do for him at this point, Donald Trump still has friends in high places:

[Florida Attorney General Pam] Bondi accepted $25,000 from Donald Trump three days after a spokeswoman said she would be reviewing a complaint filed by the New York attorney general against Trump’s for-profit schools. Even though they’ve received complaints in Florida as well, Bondi’s office has yet to take action.

Sweet! Helluva job, Pam. Keep working for Florida!

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2 Responses to “First his father, and now his father-in-law!”

  1. charlie Says:

    I have a feeling that the “they should have known it was all bullshit” defense is coming to a non-profit uni near yass real soon….

  2. Jack/OH Says:

    RICO? Universities? Same breath? My non-prof, non-lawyer belly tells me it’s coming to selected universities. Why? Student loan debt, plus a politically motivated desire to put a lid on the higher-ed-as-quasi-religion rhetoric.

    If my long observation of my local Podunk Tech is any guide, there’ll be plenty of low-hanging fruit for federal district attorneys to pluck.

    As a card-carrying bookworm and true believer in the life of the mind as a good thing, I’m not happy about what I believe to be coming.

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