Jared Kushner’s biggest real estate gaffe just got a shady Qatari bailout

The family real estate company controlled by President Trump’s son-in-law is on the verge of taking a half-billion dollar bailout deal from a Qatari-backed real estate fund to rescue their disastrous investment into the Manhattan office tower at 666 Fifth Avenue.

White House advisor Jared Kushner bought the white albatross building for a record $1.8 billion just over ten years ago and has been desperately scrambling to pay his creditors ever since. Kushner tried to get cash from a shady Chinese insurance company, and reports of his unsuccessful previous attempts at getting Qatari money have emerged regularly

Now, the New York Times says that a real estate fund closely linked to the Qatari government is going to rescue the Kushner family’s terribly mistaken investment in midtown Manhattan to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. The Times reports:

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The company controlled by the family of the White House adviser Jared Kushner is close to receiving a bailout of its financially troubled flagship building by a company with ties to the government of Qatar, according to executives briefed on the deal.

Charles Kushner, head of the Kushner Companies, is in advanced talks with Brookfield Properties over a partnership to take control of the 41-story aluminum-clad tower 666 Fifth Avenue in Midtown, according to two real estate executives who have been briefed on the pending deal but are not authorized to discuss it.

Brookfield is a publicly traded company, headquartered in Canada, one of whose major investors is the Qatar Investment Authority.

This isn’t the first time that a Qatar-linked investor is working with Jared Kushner since he entered the White House.

The Intercept reported last year that Trump’s son-in-law asked Qatar’s former Foreign Minister HBJ for a $500 million bailout deal and that this year, the discussions happened all the way until they said “no.” Three weeks later, Kushner’s newfound friends in Saudi Arabia declared a blockade against the Qatari government.

Last year, he met with the founder of Apollo Global Management, who was an official Trump administration advisor on infrastructure and then his family company obtained a $186 million loan on a Chicago skyscraper from that fund.

Kushner’s newest deal is through a different fund linked to the Gulf Arab nation who has been locked in a regional conflict with its neighbors over their support of Iran, the Muslim Brotherhood and their factions inside Syria. The Times explains:

Brookfield has extensive ties to Qatar. The Qatar Investment Authority is the second-largest shareholder in Brookfield Properties, ranking only behind Brookfield’s former parent company.

And the Qatar fund and Brookfield have teamed up on several real estate deals in the United States and elsewhere in recent years, including Brookfield’s retail and apartment complex, Manhattan West, now under construction on the West Side. Brookfield and Qatar also control the Canary Wharf office complex in London.

Last week, we exposed credible claims of a payoff made to convicted former Trump National Security Advisor Gen. Flynn made by Qatar’s former second in command US diplomat, Ahmed Al-Rumaihi.

A Trump Tower meeting just emerged this week – with Al-Rumaihi’s conspicuous presence in a C-SPAN video – between the presidential transition led by General Flynn and Michael Cohen with Qatar’s Foreign Minister on December 12th, 2016. The House Intelligence minority report says that Jared Kushner’s top assistant met with Russian Ambassador Kislyak that same day.

The oil-rich Persian Gulf state participated as the buyer in the largest Russian oil privatization deal ever, which was outlined in Christopher Steel’s Trump Russia dossier; he claims that the President collected a brokerage commission on the deal.

Then yesterday, the Qatari ex-diplomat admitted that Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen tried to shake them down for a million dollar fee just weeks after the 2016 election

After an 18-months-long swirl of rumors about Qatar’s role in oil deals and with the Kushner family’s businesses, the super wealthy nation of 2,400,000 citizens has landed firmly in the spotlight of both the Trump Russia investigation and a new, multi-million dollar Manhattan deal that is sure to raise questions of impropriety.

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Grant Stern

Editor at Large

Grant Stern is a columnist for the Washington Press. He's also mortgage broker, writer, community activist and radio personality in Miami, Florida.


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