Trump’s Dealings with Saudis Under Investigation

Questions swirl over Trump’s golf courses and business ties with Riyadh.

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Former President Donald Trump’s dealings with Saudi-backed professional golf venture, LIV Golf, is under investigation as part of the U.S. Justice Department’s probe into his handling of classified documents.

The connection between Trump’s relationship with LIV Golf and the broader classified documents investigation being undertaken by federal prosecutors is not yet fully known. What is known is that the LIV golf venture is 93 percent owned by the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund – the same sovereign wealth fund led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that invested $2 billion in a firm controlled by Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

Trump’s financial dealings with LIV appear to be the subject of at least one of the subpoenas sent to the Trump Organization, as federal prosecutors continue to look closely at the Trump family business.

This year, Trump’s golf courses will host three tournaments for LIV Golf, which the Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund is fully underwriting, at Trump courses in New Jersey, Virginia and Florida. This is after Trump hosted the league last year. Neither the Trump Organization, or the Saudi league have disclosed the financial terms of the arrangement.

The relationship shows that, as Trump plans to make another run at the Oval Office, he will remain one of the Saudis’ top political patrons – and they, similarly, seem to be allying with him.

Earlier this year, supporters of the murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi (who is widely believed to have been killed with the approval of the Crown Prince), demanded that the DOJ and Congress investigate Trump over any payments he received to host the LIV Golf tour at his resorts.

Founded in 2021, LIV Golf has been accused of being a “sportswashing” vehicle for the Saudi Arabian state. But it was only after it was revealed that the Crown Prince was behind it that calls for an investigation into whether payments made to Trump businesses by LIV Golf grew strident.