Trump Foundation agrees to dissolve after lawsuit alleged ‘illegal conduct’

The Donald J. Trump Foundation agreed to dissolve “under judicial supervision” on Tuesday, as part of the New York State attorney general’s lawsuit against it alleging illegal conduct and “unlawful political coordination” to benefit President Trump's personal and business interests. Attorney General Barbara Underwood brought the suit against the Foundation in June, following a months-long … Continue reading “Trump Foundation agrees to dissolve after lawsuit alleged ‘illegal conduct’”

The Donald J. Trump Foundation agreed to dissolve “under judicial supervision” on Tuesday, as part of the New York State attorney general’s lawsuit against it alleging illegal conduct and “unlawful political coordination” to benefit President Trump's personal and business interests.

Attorney General Barbara Underwood brought the suit against the Foundation in June, following a months-long investigation led by disgraced former New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.

On Tuesday, Underwood announced that, following a court decision in favor of the attorney general, the Foundation “signed a stipulation” agreeing to dissolve, distributing the remaining charitable assets of the Foundation “to reputable organizations approved” by her office.

“Our petition detailed a shocking pattern of illegality involving the Trump Foundation – including unlawful coordination with the Trump presidential campaign, repeated and willful self-dealing, and much more,” Underwood said in a statement Tuesday. “This amounted to the Trump Foundation functioning as little more than a checkbook to serve Mr. Trump’s business and political interests.”

NEW YORK AG FILES LAWSUIT AGAINST TRUMP FOUNDATION FOR ALLEGED 'ILLEGAL CONDUCT'; TRUMP SAYS HE 'WON'T SETTLE'

She added: “This is an important victory for the rule of law, making clear that there is one set of rules for everyone. We’ll continue to move our suit forward to ensure that the Trump Foundation and its directors are held to account for their clear and repeated violations of federal and state law.”

The suit claims that Trump used the foundation’s charitable assets to pay off his legal obligations, promote Trump brand hotels and business, and to purchase personal items. The suit also claims that the foundation “illegally provided extensive support to his 2016 presidential campaign by using the Trump Foundation’s name and funds it raised from the public to promote his campaign for presidency.”

The suit seeks to ban President Trump from future service as a director of a New York non-profit for 10 years, and ban his sons Eric and Donald Jr., and daughter Ivanka from service for one year.

In a statement to Fox News, Trump Organization attorney Alan Futerfas said the foundation has been looking to shut down since Trump was elected to office.

“Contrary to the NYAG’s misleading statement issued earlier today, the Foundation has been seeking to dissolve and distribute its remaining assets to worthwhile charitable causes since Donald J. Trump’s victory in the 2016 Presidential election," Futerfas said in a statement to Fox News. "Unfortunately, the NYAG sought to prevent dissolution for almost two years, thereby depriving those most in need of nearly $1.7 million. Over the past decade, the Foundation is proud to have distributed approximately $19 million, including $8.25 million of the President’s personal money, to over 700 different charitable organizations with virtually zero expenses. The NYAG’s inaccurate statement of this morning is a further attempt to politicize this matter.”

WHERE ARE TRUMP FOUNDATION FUNDS ACTUALLY GOING?

Underwood took over the investigation into the organization in May, after Schneiderman stepped down following the publication of a damning report by The New Yorker, detailing four women’s claims that he had repeatedly hit them, threatened them and demeaned them. The graphic accusations included choking a former girlfriend and demanding another, who was born in Sri Lanka and whom Schneiderman reportedly referred to as his “brown slave,” call him “Master.”

The Manhattan District Attorney opened an investigation into Schneiderman following the explosive report that prompted his stunning fall from grace.

Fox News' Kristin Brown and Lissa Kaplan contributed to this report. 

Brooke Singman is a Politics Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter at @brookefoxnews.

Preschool that refused atheist family who complained about Christmas, Hanukkah celebrations is forced to pay

An atheist family in Canada whose child was barred from re-enrolling in school — after the parents complained about holiday celebrations in the classroom – was awarded nearly $12,000 Canadian (roughly $9,000 U.S.) by a British Columbia human-rights body in the family's lawsuit against the school.

Gary Mangel and Mai Yasué were told their daughter would not be allowed to re-register to attend Bowen Island Montessori School (BIMS), northwest of Vancouver, until they signed a letter agreeing to the school's curriculum, according to a decision issued last Tuesday by the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal

NEBRASKA PRINCIPAL REPORTEDLY BANS CANDY CANES, SAYS 'J SHAPE' STANDS FOR JESUS

The parents, who identify as atheists, claimed the school discriminated against the family "on the bases of religion, race, ancestry and family status."

The case, tribunal member Barbara Korenkiewicz stated, was "not about a challenge to BIMS curriculum or its approach to teaching about various cultural celebrations rooted in religious practices of diverse origin."

Is political correctness taking over Christmas?

"At its core, it is about a letter which held [the child's] registration hostage to a demand," Korenkiewicz's verdict read.

The situation began after Mangel joined the school's board of directors in 2014.

During an email discussion about elf ornaments in November 2014, Mangel wrote he didn't "think it's appropriate to celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or any other religious/political event at preschool (including Remembrance Day)," noting that his child was only three years old "[and] cannot consent to being involved in decorating military wreaths or Christmas trees or lighting Hanukkah candles."

"As a side note, I certainly hope that there will be no discussion of Santa Claus at BIMS," Mangel added. "I am absolutely against anyone blatantly lying to my daughter…"

MEGACHURCH PASTOR CRITICIZED FOR BUYING WIFE $200G LAMBORGHINI

A school board member responded that children at the preschool "will be exposed to different cultural aspects of celebrations from around the world," and said that Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa would have "equal time." The board member stated, "There is an offering of information but no insistence on belief."

Mangel, at one point in the email back-and-forth, sent "atheist Christmas ornaments" — one of which depicted the Twin Towers alongside the caption: "Atheists don't fly airplanes into buildings." Korenkiewicz wrote in her decision that she found this to be a "veiled form of Islamophobia."

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Korenkiewicz said in her decision that nothing in the case "could justify the refusal to register [the child] unless [the parents] essentially agreed that they would be significantly limited in their ability to raise issues about the cultural aspects of the BIMS program." She said the school should pay the child $2,000 and the parents $5,000 each.

Maria Turnbull, the school board chair, told Fox News on Sunday that the school's curriculum is "multicultural," and said the school was pleased the tribunal found it to be "appropriate." She said the school wishes the child's parents well and "hopes to get back to its mission" following the decision.

Nicole Darrah covers breaking and trending news for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter @nicoledarrah.

Washington state Women’s March disbands in protest of national leaders’ links to alleged anti-Semitism

A state chapter of the Women’s March is ending its group in protest of the national leadership’s troubling links to alleged anti-Semitism.

“It’s heartbreaking. Whenever you create something that literally changed your life, it’s really hard to walk away from it,” Angie Beem, a Spokane Valley resident who served as board president of Women’s March Washington, told The Spokesman-Review late last week.

Beem said she disbanded the progressive group over its continued alliance with the Nation of Islam and its leader Louis Farrakhan, who has come under fire for many years over his comments that critics have decried as anti-Semitic.

Last year, Linda Sarsour, one of the national group’s founders, who didn’t return Fox News’ request for comment, blamed “the Jewish media” for her and Farrakhan’s controversial reputation and pushed back against any accusations of anti-Semitism.

FARRAKHAN LEADS 'DEATH TO AMERICA' CHANT IN IRAN

The news outlet reported that the local group in Washington last month put out a statement denouncing anti-Semitism, transphobia and any groups supporting those prejudices.

Teresa Shook, a retired lawyer who was behind the nationwide women’s march following the election of President Trump, published a statement last month urging the current leaders of the movement to step aside.

“In opposition to our Unity Principles, they have allowed anti-Semitism, anti-LBGTQIA sentiment and hateful, racist rhetoric to become a part of the platform by their refusal to separate themselves from groups that espouse these racist, hateful beliefs,” she wrote on Facebook.

Frank Miles is a reporter and editor covering geopolitics, military, crime, technology and sports for FoxNews.com. His email is Frank.Miles@foxnews.com.

Temple University condemns, but does not punish, Marc Lamont Hill over alleged anti-Semitic comments

Temple University's Board of Trustees formally announced its "disappointment, displeasure, and disagreement" Tuesday with professor and former CNN commentator Marc Lamont Hill over remarks he made last month that critics said called for the destruction of Israel.

However, the board declined to take further action against Hill, saying that he "was not speaking on behalf of or representing the University" at the Nov. 28 International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People event at the United Nations.

"We recognize that Professor Hill’s comments are his own, that his speech as a private individual is entitled to the same Constitutional protection of any other citizen, and that he has through subsequent statements expressly rejected anti-Semitism and anti-Semitic violence," the board said in a statement.

During his speech, Hill referred to "a free Palestine from the river to the sea," a phrase often used by Hamas and other groups advocating the end of the Jewish state. At another point in his remarks, Hill poured himself some water and told participants that he just got off a flight from “Palestine” and that “I was boycotting the Israeli water so I was unable to quench my thirst.”

Hill claimed on Twitter that his use of the phrase "was not a call to destroy anything or anyone. It was a call for justice, both in Israel and in the West Bank/Gaza."

"I support Palestinian freedom. I support Palestinian self-determination," Hill said in another tweet, adding: "I do not support anti-Semitism, killing Jewish people, or any of the other things attributed to my speech. I have spent my life fighting these things."

DON LEMON: TRUTH 'DOESN'T MATTER' TO TRUMP SUPPORTERS

However, the board of trustees noted in its statement that "from the river to the sea" is "used by anti-Israel terror groups and widely perceived as language that threatens the existence of the State of Israel."

CNN cut ties with Hill the day after his remarks but did not give a specific reason for his dismissal.

TUCKER: WHAT 'CRIMES' DID TRUMP COMMIT IN COHEN CASE?

A Temple alum, Hill joined the university's faculty last year as a professor of media studies and urban education. He previously taught at Morehouse College in Atlanta and Columbia University in New York City.

Nebraska principal reportedly bans candy canes, says ‘J shape’ stands for Jesus

An elementary school principal in Nebraska was placed on leave after telling teachers to avoid decorating their classrooms with Christmas-themed ornamentations so as not to offend those who don't celebrate the holiday.

The principal at Manchester Elementary School, identified by Fox affiliate KPTM as Jennifer Sinclair, sent out a memo earlier this week with guidelines as to what is considered appropriate for classroom decorations and assignments.

MAN RUINS CHRISTMAS FESTIVAL BY SCREAMING 'THERE'S NO SANTA' AT KIDS

Teachers were reportedly told that generic winter-themed items, such as sledding and scarves, and the "Frozen" character Olaf, were acceptable.

New Jersey teacher tells first- graders Santa is not real

Decorations that included Santa, Christmas trees, reindeer, green and red colored items and even candy canes, however, were not acceptable for the elementary school.

The candy canes, according to KETV, were prohibited because Sinclair deemed them to have religious significance. "Historically, the shape is a 'J' for Jesus. The red is for the blood of Christ, and the white is a symbol of his resurrection," she reportedly wrote. "This would also include different colored candy canes."

"I feel uncomfortable that I have to get this specific, but for everyone's comfort, I will," Sinclair reportedly wrote in the memo.

The Elkhorn School District told Fox News in a statement that "the memo does not reflect the policy of Elkhorn Public Schools regarding holiday symbols in the school."

The district's policy states that "Christmas trees, Santa Claus and Easter eggs and bunnies are considered to be secular, seasonal symbols and may be displayed as teaching aids provided they do not disrupt the instructional program for students."

Sinclair was placed on administrative leave as of Thursday morning.

Nicole Darrah covers breaking and trending news for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter @nicoledarrah.

‘VeggieTales’ is ‘racist’ and ‘dangerous’ for children, California students claim

A group of students at a California college’s “Annual Whiteness Forum” labeled the Christian children’s cartoon “VeggieTales” as “dangerous” and promoting racial stereotypes for making the villains colored.

The forum at Cal State San Marcos is a project from Professor Dreama Moon’s class titled “The Communication of Whiteness.” Students called various things racist, including the NFL, women who support President Trump, and the popular animated cartoon that started in 1993 and always ended with Bob the Tomato and Larry the Cucumber’s tagline, “Remember kids, God made you special and he loves you very much,” the College Fix reported.

A female student made the claim that by humanizing vegetables, the creators of VeggieTales were using the children’s programming to promote racial stereotypes by making the villains racial minorities.

“When supremacists aim to taint the way children think of people of color, it will work,” the poster titled “Children in the Church” reads.

COLLEGE CAMPUSES ENCOURAGE STUDENTS TO DEBATE THANKSGIVING'S DARKER PAST

A student at the "Annual Whiteness Forum" at Cal State San Marcos labeled "VeggieTales" racist and dangerous for children. (The College Fix)

“Whiteness in the Bible isn’t just seen as ‘power’ it’s seen as ‘good,’” it continues. “When kids see the good white character triumph over the bad person of color character they are taught that white is right and minorities are the source of evil.”

The female student who headed up the project reportedly said the evil characters sound ethnic or Latino, while the good characters sound white.

Just to be clear, the good guys, Bob and Larry, are red and green respectively, both of which are colors.

VANDERBILT CONDEMNS 'DEEPLY DISTURBING' WHITE SUPREMACY EMAIL SENT TO STUDENTS, FACULTY

Eric Metaxas, a best-selling author and former “VeggieTales” writer and narrator, gave his take on the forum.

"All vegetables are part of one race, even though they are of many colors. They are all descended from the same parents — the Adam and Eve of vegetables, who foolishly ate a forbidden fruit (irony?) and screwed everything up for all vegetables descended from them,” Metaxas told PJ Media. “At least I’m pretty sure that’s the story."

Caleb Parke is an associate editor for FoxNews.com. You can follow him on Twitter @calebparke

DC, Maryland AGs subpoena Trump Org, Pentagon in lawsuit over DC hotel

The attorneys general for Maryland and the District of Columbia filed subpoenas Tuesday seeking records from the Trump Organization and a dozen other entities linked to President Trump as part of a lawsuit accusing him of profiting from his presidency in violation of the Constitution.

The subpoenas came one day after U.S. District Court Judge Peter J. Messitte approved a brisk schedule for discovery in the case alleging that foreign and domestic government spending at Trump's Washington, D.C. hotel amounts to gifts to the president in violation of the emoluments clause. The Article I clause, also known as the Title of Nobility Clause, prohibits federal officeholders from receiving "any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State" without the consent of Congress.

The subpoenas target 37 entities, including the Department of Defense, General Services Administration, Department of the Treasury, Department of Commerce and the Department of Agriculture, all of which have spent taxpayer dollars at the hotel or have information on Trump's finances relevant to the case. The other Trump entities targeted include those related to the D.C. hotel and its management. The attorneys general also subpoenaed 18 entities that compete with the Trump Hotel in an apparent effort to determine how their business has been affected since Trump's election and inauguration.

The subpoenas focus on answering three questions: which foreign or domestic governments are paying the Trump International Hotel in Washington, where that money is going and how Trump's hotel is affecting the hospitality industry in the District of Columbia and Maryland.

To help answer those questions, the subpoenas are asking for records of payments to Trump from state government and federal agencies that patronized the hotel. They're also seeking information proving that hotel revenues are going to the president through his affiliated entities, including The Donald J. Trump Revocable Trust. Most of the records are being requested back to Jan. 1, 2015.

The Justice Department declined to comment. Neither the Trump Organization nor the White House immediately responded to a request for comment Tuesday.

Trump's Justice Department lawyers have previously argued that earnings from such business activity as hotel stays don't qualify as emoluments. And in court papers last week challenging the judge's decision to move the case forward, Justice lawyers objected to any discovery on a sitting president in order to avoid a "constitutional confrontation." They also argued that any discovery would "be a distraction to the President's performance of his constitutional duties."

Trump's Justice Department lawyers filed a notice to the court Friday indicating it plans to challenge the Maryland judge's decision to allow the case to move forward in a Richmond, Va. court. The president's notice that he may seek a writ of mandamus — to have the appeal heard by a higher court — is considered an "extraordinary remedy" that's hard to prove and partly rests on showing Messitte's decisions to be clearly wrong.

Because Trump was also the first president in modern history to not release his tax returns, any responsive records would likely provide the first clear picture of the finances of Trump's business empire as well as his Washington, D.C., hotel.

There is no indication yet that Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh and District of Columbia Attorney General Karl A. Racine, both Democrats, would push for the president's tax returns, at least in this initial round of legal discovery, given the sensitive nature of such a request and likely additional delays it would cause. But tax returns for some of Trump's business entities, including the state and federal tax returns for the Trump Organization, are also being requested.

There is a separate federal lawsuit involving the General Services Administration, which oversees the lease for the hotel with the Trump Organization. Democratic lawmakers last year sued demanding disclosures of records to determine how Trump was approved by the General Services Administration to maintain the lease of the Trump International Hotel in Washington after he became president.

The hotel is housed in the historic Old Post Office, which is owned by the federal government, and its lease has a clause barring any "elected official of the government of the United States" from deriving "any benefit." Trump and his daughter, Ivanka, a senior White House adviser, both retained their stakes in the property.

The plaintiffs' prior preservation subpoena filing requested documents that concern "marketing to foreign or domestic governments, including members of the diplomatic community" for 23 Trump-linked entities, be saved. Other noted categories for preservation include documents that would identify guests of the hotel and those who have rented event space, details on all finances and "operating leases, permits, licenses, tax payments or credits to or from foreign or domestic governments."

The state of Maine is also targeted for a subpoena, likely because its governor, Republican Paul LePage, stayed at Trump's hotel in Washington when he had official business to conduct, including discussions with the president. Representatives for LePage's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

On one of those trips last year, Trump and LePage appeared together at a news conference at which Trump signed an executive order to review orders of the prior administration that established national monuments within the National Park Service. President Barack Obama had established a park and national monument in Maine over LePage's objections in 2016.

If there are no delays, legal discovery would conclude in early August.

Fox News’ John Roberts The Associated Press contributed to this report.

UC Berkeley will pay $70G to conservative group to settle free speech lawsuit

After more than a year of litigation, the University of California, Berkeley, has settled a lawsuit with the Young Americas Foundation and the UC Berkeley College Republicans.

Campus conservatives accused the university of bias in the process of bringing high-profile speakers to campus. The original lawsuit revolved around the cancellation of an event with Ann Coulter. An amended version of the lawsuit included roadblocks initiated by the university for an event with Ben Shapiro.

The Department of Justice filed a statement of interest backing the campus conservatives. The crux of their argument revolved around two campus policies that they claim violate students’ First and 14th Amendment rights: an unspoken "High-Profile Speaker Policy" and an on-the-books "Major Events Policy."

“This Department of Justice will not stand by idly while public universities violate students’ constitutional rights,” Associate Attorney General Rachel Brand said at the time.

In the settlement, UC Berkeley agreed to the following terms set by YAF:

1. Pay YAF $70,000.

2. Rescind the unconstitutional “High-Profile Speaker Policy.”

3. Rescind the viewpoint-discriminatory security fee policy.

4. Abolish its heckler’s veto — protesters will no longer be able to shut down conservative expression.

Under these terms, UC Berkeley will no longer be allowed to place a 3 p.m. curfew on conservative events or relegate conservative speakers to remote or inconvenient lecture halls on campus while giving left-leaning speakers access to preferred parts of campus.

Click for more from the Washington Examiner.

Pennsylvania court sides with some priests in abuse report, shields names

Pennsylvania's highest court says the names of 11 Roman Catholic clergy cited in a grand jury report on sexual abuse of children can't be made public.

The Supreme Court said Monday releasing the information would have violated the clergymen's state constitutional right to have their reputation protected.

The clergy challenged being named in the document before its August release.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro says that although he can't release the names, the state's bishops should.

The clergy argued they hadn't been provided an adequate opportunity to respond to the grand jury about the allegations. They also said the report stigmatized people who hadn't been convicted of crimes, and contained inaccuracies.

The jury found more than 300 priests had abused children going back 70 years, and church officials covered up abuse.

UNC proposal to keep ‘Silent Sam’ on campus at new location triggers protest

A plan to move a Confederate statue presented by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on Monday sparked protests hours after campus trustees overwhelming approved the proposal.

Chancellor Carol Folt’s proposal included moving the statue — known as “Silent Sam” — into a new $5 million building on the outskirts of the school’s campus, at a site a mile south of where the monument once stood. Only one trustee voted against it.

FLASHBACK: UNC CALLS OUR PROTESTERS' 'UNLAWFUL AND DANGEROUS' ACTIONS AFTER SILENT SAM STATUE TAKEN DOWN

Protesters on Monday night marched to the former home of the statue, peacefully but noisily. The statue’s pedestal, which appeared to be boarded up, was guarded by university police.

As the protesters pressed against the railings, officers started passing out riot helmets. The protesters then began chanting, "We don't see a riot here! Why are you in riot gear?"

The protesters later began to disperse.

“Silent Sam,” which was erected in 1913, was toppled in August by demonstrators who decried the statue as a symbol of racist heritage.

Folt — who acknowledged “the monument has been divisive for years” — at the time called their actions “unlawful and dangerous.”

The chancellor and several of the trustees said they would have preferred moving the statue off campus entirely, but they were restricted by a 2015 state law on Confederate statues and other monuments. Folt said safety was chief among many factors considered in developing the new plan.

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"It was very clear that public safety alone would make it impossible to return it to its base or any outdoor location on our campus," she said during the meeting Monday.

UNC isn't the first university to grapple with Confederate monuments and ultimately decide to move one indoors.

The University of Texas has removed several Confederate statues from an outdoor display, including a statue of Confederate President Jefferson Davis taken down in 2015 and now displayed in a museum.

North Carolina's law on historical monuments allows relocation in only narrow circumstances, such as to preserve the artifact or because of construction.

For more than a year before its toppling, "Silent Sam" had been the site of protests that intensified after a deadly 2017 white nationalist demonstration in Charlottesville, Virginia. In the weeks after Silent Sam was torn down, demonstrations for and against the statue continued, leading to arrests.

Amid these protests, the university vowed to come up with a "legal and lasting" plan for the statue, taking input from students, alumni, faculty, and others. It's been stored in an undisclosed location while the university developed a plan for it.

Already, critics of the statue have complained in online postings that the new plan is too expensive and that the statue has no place on campus, calling for renewed protests.

Fox News’ Lucia Suarez Sang and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Nicole Darrah covers breaking and trending news for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter @nicoledarrah.