Bad Deal

Donald Trump has denied knowing Robert Libutti, but there is video tape (there’s always a tape) of Trump and Libutti attending the World Wrestling Federation’s 1988 Wrestlemania together. One of Trump’s casinos was once fined $200,000 for pulling black and female employees off the floor at LiButti’s request.  Casino regulators banned LiButti from gambling anywhere in New Jersey because of his close ties to infamous crime lord John Gotti. (Incidentally, Gotti and Trump attended the same prep school).

A newly uncovered video appears to contradict Donald Trump’s claim that he never knew a high-stakes gambler who was banned from New Jersey casinos for alleged ties to organized crime. The reputed mob figure, Robert LiButti, can be seen standing alongside Trump in the front row of a 1988 “WrestleMania” match in Atlantic City, N.J. LiButti wasn’t there by accident, according to his daughter, Edith Creamer, who also attended the event. “We were his guests,” she told Yahoo News in a text message this week. […]

The video appears to lend new support to assertions Trump once had close relations with LiButti, who was banned from the state’s casinos in 1991 because of his ties to Mafia boss John Gotti, then the chief of the Gambino crime syndicate. Separately, the New Jersey Casino Control Commission that same year levied $650,000 in fines against the Trump Plaza hotel over its dealings with LiButti, who gambled huge sums at the hotel’s casino. LiButti died in 2014.

The video could raise fresh questions about two separate investigations by casino regulators that led to the huge fines levied in 1991. In one of those cases, Trump’s hotel was fined $200,000 for violating state anti-discrimination laws. Investigators found that the casino accommodated LiButti’s demand — couched in what one state official described as the “vilest” language, including racial and obscene slurs — that blacks and women be kept away from him at the gambling tables. Trump was never questioned as part of the state’s investigation, files reviewed by Yahoo News show.

(Yahoo News, November 2, 2016)