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Records of a decades-old and long since settled lawsuit involving President Donald Trump’s most famous building were previously believed to be lost. Until last week.
Lawyers who worked the case involving undocumented workers reportedly found two key records: a transcript and brief pertaining to the case’s settlement in 1998. A lower court judge can now decide whether to release them, the New York Daily News reported Wednesday.
The unreleased documents could shed more light on how and why the case settled before it went to trial.
Attorney Lewis Steel wrote to Manhattan Federal Judge Loretta Preska last week, stating former lawyer Wendy Sloan had uncovered the documents that could shed further light on a 1983 lawsuit filed by a Polish union worker that alleged then-real estate developer Trump had mistreated and even threatened to have Polish workers deported while they demolished the building that stood before his titular tower on New York’s Fifth Avenue, Trump Tower.
“She has the missing transcript and brief,” Steel wrote. “Ms. Sloan informs me that at all times these documents have remained in her possession and that she kept them confidential.”
Complemented by the 2nd Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals' decision last month to overturn an order that kept the case’s documents hidden, Steel stated: “We know of no privacy reason why these documents should not be unsealed.”
For years and during his successful campaign trail, Trump denied ever knowingly hiring undocumented immigrants on his job sites and repeatedly railed against illegal immigration as a significant problem in the country that he could fix.
But, as Time magazine reported in August, Trump has faced various allegations to the contrary.
In the case involving undocumented workers from Poland, the workers complained in 1980 that they were working in unsafe conditions and were not being paid on time. Other documents from the case, according to Time, found Trump had actively pursued the Polish workers, created the company that would pay them and directly worked out their work schedules.
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Due to the workers’ complaints about their untimely or lack of pay, Trump asked Daniel Sullivan, a labor consultant for help.
“Donald told me he had difficulties.… " Sullivan testified, according to Time. "That he had some illegal Polish employees on the job."
As the dispute over pay continued, Trump reportedly said through his attorney at the time that he had threatened to call the Immigration and Naturalization Service to have the workers deported.
Both Time and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press have been trying to unearth the documents in question, according to Wednesday’s report.
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