‘Mafia Connections’ Killed A Trump Casino

Taj Mahal

Rupert Murdoch’s newspaper, The Australian reports that in 1987, Donald Trump tried to build and operate the first casino in Sydney, Australia but the New South Wales (NSW) government shut the plan down due to a secret police report warning against the bid citing Trump’s “mafia connections.”

In May 1987, state government officials in Australia held a meeting to consider the plans and received a police report advising against the bid, saying it would be “dangerous” to move forward with the casino project – a joint venture with Queensland-based Kern Corporation and Trump.

The confidential NSW cabinet report obtained by The Australian said in part, “The board is firmly of the view that on tests of sound repute, probity and integrity, none of the three consortia discussed above (HKMS, Kern/Trump, Federal/Resort/Sabemo) can be considered acceptable; indeed each would be dangerous,” the Police Board found.”

The report went on to say, “Atlantic City would be a dubious model for Sydney and in our judgment, the Trump Mafia connections should exclude the Kern/Trump consortium.”

A financial report containing information about Trump casinos in Atlantic City concluded revenue projections for the Sydney project were exaggerated, “However, the projected casino revenue estimates are not soundly based and the quantum of the ­potential overstatement is so mat­erial that the tender is not financially viable. Also, the tender is not fin­ancially viable on the basis of expected returns to equity investors.”

At the time, Trump owned two casinos in New Jersey—Trump Plaza and Trump’s Castle—and Trump’s Taj Mahal was on its way.

From The Australian:

Mr. Trump boasted about his bid for the casino before cabinet reached its decision. “If our design is chosen, it will not only be the largest, but one of the most magnificent, one of the most beautiful hotels anywhere in the world,” he told The Australian in February 1987. A month before the cabinet decision, he pulled out of the casino race but three days later announced he was still a contender.

Yep, sure sounds like Trump.

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