Revealed: Donald Trump's firms charged Secret Service more than £17,000 for 2017 trips

Donald Trump’s golf resorts in Scotland and Ireland charged the US Secret Service more than £17,000 for a series of previously undisclosed trips during his first full year in office.

A tranche of invoices and spending records released by the US government agency under Freedom of Information legislation shows the former US president’s properties in Turnberry and Doonbeg received a string of payments throughout 2017.

As well as footing the bill for stays at Trump’s South Ayrshire resort, the records show US taxpayers stumped up several thousand pounds for luxury car rentals during a visit to Scotland by Trump’s son Eric.

Sign up to our Politics newsletter

Sign up to our Politics newsletter

The newly disclosed documentation was obtained by American Oversight – a non-partisan, non-profit ethics watchdog based in Washington DC, and passed to The Scotsman.

The organisation said the receipts provided further evidence of how the Trump family was able to “line its pockets” by charging its security detail to stay at Trump Organisation properties.

While the sums involved are relatively small, they provide further evidence of how Mr Trump’s private businesses received taxpayers’ money thanks to his public office. Throughout the 74-year-old’s single term, his Turnberry resort alone received close to £300,000 from the Secret Service.

The latest disclosure details an invoice prepared by the Turnberry resort dated August 14, 2017 for £5,400. The cost is for one room, although information about the duration of the stay has been redacted by the Secret Service. The invoice is addressed to the US Embassy in London.

It is unclear who visited Turnberry that month, but as revealed last December, Eric and a 30-strong party of "international guests" flew to Scotland by private jet in July 2017 to play the family’s golf resorts.

Donald Trump's Doonbeg resort charged the US Secret Service nearly £12,000 for two trips in 2017. Picture: Charles McQuillan/Getty

Read More

Read More
Revealed: Secret Service paid Donald Trump's resort nearly £25,000 for son's bus...

That trip, part of the Trump Organisation’s so-called Ultimate Links Tour, saw Secret Service agents stay at Turnberry.

The overall cost of the visit to the US public purse was more than £13,000, according to records previously obtained by The Scotsmanvia US Freedom of Information laws.

Austin Evers, executive director at American Oversight, said: “No-one objects to the Trump family receiving Secret Service protection, but every time they charge their security detail to stay at a Trump hotel, thousands of taxpayer dollars line their pockets.

Austin Evers, executive director at American Oversight, said the Trump family was able to "line their pockets" with US taxpayers' money. Picture: American Oversight

“If Eric is going to visit Scotland in the future, the public should demand he find less kleptocratic accommodations.”

The newly released Secret Service receipts disclosed to American Oversight now show that during July, the Secret Service also paid £6,042 to Little’s – a Glasgow-based luxury car rental and chauffeur business.

The same firm received a six-figure windfall from the US federal government the previous summer when Trump flew to Turnberry on a private visit.

The receipts also show that during that month’s Ultimate Links Tour, Secret Service agents accompanied Eric and his guests after they left Turnberry for Trump’s Doonbeg resort in the Republic of Ireland. Trump’s Co Clare firm charged the agency £5,310 for rooms between July 22 and 23.

That April, meanwhile, the Doonbeg hotel also charged £6,680 to the Secret Service for accommodation to cover a visit by Eric. He and his wife, Lara, had visited Turnberry just days before, with Trump’s flagship Scottish firm paid £6,820 for hotel rooms.

The Trump Organisation did not respond to enquiries from The Scotsman.

A message from the editor:

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers. If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.

 0 comments

Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.