“Slumlord” Jared Kushner is proving just how much of a sleazeball landlord he can be as it comes to light his family’s real estate business reportedly falsified paperwork in order to force out tenants.
Bloomberg reports that New York City fined Kushner Cos. $210,000 on Monday for lying on construction permit applications about the number of rent-regulated tenants in their buildings. The company is accused of filing 42 false documents in 17 buildings since 2013 — all while Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and presidential adviser, was running the business.
According to The Associated Press, Kushner Cos. denies the allegations and will contest the violations, stating they use third-party consultants to file their paperwork.
New York mandates all property developers detail the number of rent-stabilized tenants in their buildings in order to protect them from construction projects that could be meant to harass residents. When rent-controlled tenants move out, landlords can jack up the price of their units for new tenants.
“Protecting tenants is a key part of our mission to make construction safe for all New Yorkers, and we are determined to hold landlords accountable for the accuracy of their applications — no matter who they are," New York’s Department of Buildings said in a statement.
Tenant advocates claim the Kushner family drove out rent-stabilized tenants with disruptive building projects, and 19 tenants filed a $10 million lawsuit against the company, alleging they experienced dangerous living conditions due to construction, including toxic dust and vermin infestations. The business was able to clear out 250 residents and earned $155 million. New York state has subsequently launched a probe regarding this case.
This isn’t the first time Kushner’s purported predatory landlord tactics have been uncovered. A ProPublica investigation revealed Kushner sued lower-income tenants over trivial claims.
Kushner’s manipulative, slimy strategy as a landlord has apparently translated into his new political role. Never a stranger to controversy, Kushner reportedly hid one of his businesses in financial disclosure forms, a move that he could have profited millions off of. With the growing list of Trump-associated scandals exposed, it certainly seems like ethics is not a priority for the White House.
Banner/thumbnail photo credit: REUTERS/Joshua Roberts