Newly unsealed court documents show President Donald Trump paid more than $1.3 million in labor settlements in 1998 after he was accused of using undocumented workers for the construction of Trump Tower in Manhattan, the New York Times reported Monday night.
Previous reports revealed that Trump employed 200 undocumented immigrants to help demolish the Bonwit Teller building in order to build Trump’s signature New York property at 725 Fifth Ave. Trump claimed in 1990 in court that he didn’t know the workers were undocumented, but others testified Trump was aware the workers were undocumented.
While Trump has insisted he never settles cases, he ultimately settled this lawsuit.
The settlement had been under seal for nearly 20 years, until last week when a district court judge in Manhattan ordered it to be publicly released, showing Trump settled Hardy v. Kaszycki for $1.375 million, according to the Times. The Times reported the unsealing of the documents were in response to a motion filed by Time Inc. and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press in 2016.
The news comes as Trump is still railing against undocumented immigrants in the United States. “We are fighting hard for merit-based immigration, no more Democrat lottery systems. We must get MUCH tougher (and smarter),” he tweeted Nov. 1.
Trump hinted Tuesday morning that he’s prepared to shut down the government if the funding bill includes immigration legislation.
“Meeting with ‘Chuck and Nancy’ today about keeping government open and working,” Trump tweeted. “Problem is they want illegal immigrants flooding into our country unchecked, are weak on crime and want to substantially RAISE taxes. I don’t see a deal!”