UK Tax Filings Show Trump Inflated Value of Scottish Resorts by $165 Million

Donald Trump in June 2016 at Trump International in Scotland. Photo: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Despite California’s Trump-targeting law requiring candidates to release their tax returns in order to be listed on the ballot for the state’s 2020 primary, the president’s tax filings remain as opaque as they were when he dipped his elevator shoes into politics in 2015. But Trump’s tax elusivity does not hold up abroad, as the president has to file detailed balance sheets in the United Kingdom for his Scottish golf courses: Trump International outside Aberdeen and Trump Turnberry in Ayrshire. According to numbers from the U.K. filings published by HuffPost, the president’s resorts abroad aren’t doing as hot as he says they are.

In a 2018 U.S. filing, Trump claimed that his courses in Ayrshire and Aberdeen were each worth over $50 million, but in the U.K., the balance sheets showed that their combined debt exceeded assets by the equivalent of $64.8 million. In a 2018 public financial disclosure filed with the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, he stated that the U.K. golf courses made a profit of $23.8 million, though filings in the U.K. for that same time period showed a loss equal to $6.3 million. In addition, the U.S. disclosure does not mention the $199.5 million in loans Trump has made to his U.K. Scottish links, made up of a $54.9 million personal loan to Trump International and $144.6 million from his trust to Trump Turnberry.

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