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World News

Trump blasts niece's 'conspiracy theories' as he seeks fraud lawsuit's dismissal

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump is seeking the dismissal of a lawsuit claiming he defrauded his niece out of an inheritance worth tens of millions of dollars, accusing her of embracing “conspiracy theories” in her quest to consume him with lawsuits after he leaves the White House.

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump addresses a campaign rally in Dalton, Georgia, U.S., on the eve of the run-off election to decide both of Georgia's Senate seats January 4, 2021. REUTERS/Leah Millis/File Photo

The president’s lawyers said Mary Trump gave up her claims in a 2001 settlement with family members over the estate of his father Fred Trump Sr, who died in 1999.

They also said Mary Trump waited too long to accuse Donald Trump, his sister Maryanne Trump Barry and his late brother Robert Trump of trying to “squeeze” her out of her inheritance, relying instead on a 2018 New York Times report on tax matters involving the family.

“Plaintiff makes outlandish and incredulous accusations in her complaint, which is laden with conspiracy theories more befitting a Hollywood screenplay than a pleading in a legal action,” the lawyers, who also represent Robert Trump’s estate, said in a filing on Monday in a New York state court in Manhattan.

They said the lawsuit’s “true purpose” was “to weaken the President’s political influence during his post-presidency by preoccupying him with the defense of innumerable lawsuits.”

Mary Trump, 55, a psychologist, made some of her allegations in her best-selling tell-all: “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.”

The president’s sister, a retired federal judge, also wants the lawsuit dismissed.

Roberta Kaplan, a lawyer for Mary Trump, said that while her client “is surely no fan of Donald Trump or his administration’s policies, [the] intra-family fraud is what this case is about.”

Donald Trump, a Republican, was defeated in the Nov. 3 election by Democrat Joe Biden and his term ends Jan. 20.

Trump faces several other legal actions. These include a criminal probe by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, a civil probe by New York Attorney General Letitia James into whether he inflated asset values to obtain loans and tax benefits, and a defamation lawsuit by the writer E. Jean Carroll, whose allegation of rape he has denied.

(This story refiles to change spelling of seventh word in third paragraph to “too” from “to”)

Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; editing by Grant McCool

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