The Trump Organization is suing the estate of the man who died in a fire in his Trump Tower apartment earlier this year for unpaid condo and maintenance fees, court filings show.
Todd Brassner perished when an electrical fire engulfed his 50th-floor unit in Trump Tower in April. Brassner was a long-time resident of Trump Tower and worked as an art dealer. He amassed a collection of instruments and art worth millions, none of which survived the blaze.
Brassner's apartment was not equipped with smoke alarms or sprinklers due in large part to now-President Donald Trump's opposition to having them installed in the 1990's. He claimed the $4 per foot cost was too much.
Now, in a lawsuit filed with the New York Supreme Court, the Residential Board of Trump Tower Condominium is suing Brassner's estate for $64,000 in unpaid condo fees and an additional $25,000 "legal fees and expenses incurred" by the Board.
The filing states:
"By reason of the foregoing, there is now due, and owing to the Condominium the sum of $64,640.34 as of September 24, 2018, as well as additional common charges and additional common charges which will or may come due during the pendency of this action."
"As a result, Plaintiff is entitled to a money judgment in an amount to be determined at trial, but believed to be at least $25,000.00."
Twitter thinks this is a dirty move, even for Trump.
The Trump Organization is suing a the estate of a man who died in a fire in his Trump Tower apartment that had no s… https://t.co/q428lM3aBz— Judd Legum (@Judd Legum) 1539877285.0
No smoke detectors! Very basic safety measure skimped on to save dollars. #Trump is El #Cheapo https://t.co/Ddgyu2FH9V— Mike (@Mike) 1539881020.0
@JuddLegum "As you may know by now, when you attack (Donald) he will punch back 10 times harder. No matter who you… https://t.co/UtGGaCMxHk— pwthm11 (@pwthm11) 1539877449.0
@Sjcrookston @JuddLegum No, actually, I would hope that anyone stooping that low would be pilloried in public.— small.angry.tacky.loud. (@small.angry.tacky.loud.) 1539878173.0
@JuddLegum @JamieTFox The sleaze literally oozes from every fiber this cancer on American society. He needs to move… https://t.co/UJAJUtxDad— LACar523 (@LACar523) 1539879906.0
@JuddLegum @MargaretMenefee HEARTLESS!!!— Donna Longo (@Donna Longo) 1539878376.0
@JuddLegum So typical of the Trump family, including Jared in terms of how his company dealt with tenants in the re… https://t.co/ngck7GtHRw— Jeanine Barone (@Jeanine Barone) 1539878126.0
@JuddLegum @TrumpDotDotDot WTF????— I smell money laundering (@I smell money laundering) 1539879444.0
@JuddLegum We may never know how low he will go! Check for anything that sounds like a heartbeat.?— sherry ❤️Reality Winner🆘 (@sherry ❤️Reality Winner🆘) 1539877801.0
@JuddLegum No shame and soulless #Trump— ML CLIFF (@ML CLIFF) 1539885862.0
@JuddLegum Just when I think they can’t surprise me....— bardgal (@bardgal) 1539880943.0
@JuddLegum I'd expect no less from @realDonaldTrump. He wants to take away healthcare from those that need it the m… https://t.co/XVOTZYPT9n— Nony2U (@Nony2U) 1539880259.0
@JuddLegum Guess trump needs money to pay his own fines for not having his building up to code, again. God, this is terrible.— Ditch mitch mcCONnell (@Ditch mitch mcCONnell) 1539877407.0
@JuddLegum How disgusting.— RoseMSerrano (@RoseMSerrano) 1539877398.0
Others weren't surprised because it's Trump.
Trump: too cheap to put in sprinkler - deregulation in action since they are not required by law in New York City residential buildings. Trump lobbied against a law that would have required retrofitting buildings with fire safety systems.
@JuddLegum That should come to no surprise.— Megan (@Megan) 1539877392.0
@JuddLegum Jesus, they'll even try to take your money when you're dead.— Raven Mae (@Raven Mae) 1539883239.0
@NBCNews Of course he did. Literally everything is someone else's fault.— Meagan Paullin (@Meagan Paullin) 1539877150.0
@NBCNews A total Trump move and you know damn well DT gave the green light on this...— Scott (@Scott) 1539880387.0
@NBCNews When money is at stake, Trump goes low for every nickel.— brion w gallagher (@brion w gallagher) 1539878012.0
@NBCNews Suing a dead man. Classy!— Red (@Red) 1539877806.0
@NBCNews Imagine their level of empathy and their greed— AYSE JOURDAN (@AYSE JOURDAN) 1539888177.0
@NBCNews @rhonda_harbison https://t.co/96T0eRkIo7— Cool Daddy NedSparks (@Cool Daddy NedSparks) 1539877985.0
The building had previously taken out a lien on Brassner's unit after he defaulted on common charges and declared bankruptcy. The lien was filed in May 2018 - a month after his death.
Brassner had also been making unsuccessful attempts at selling the apartment; the election of Trump and the heightened security in and around Trump Tower made it difficult to find buyers.
Thus, Trump and Brassner had a history of feuding. Trump once referred to Brassner as "that crazy Jew," while Brassner told a friend Trump is the “worst thing for our country” and a “terrible, lowlife human being,” according to the New York Daily News.
In addition to Brassner's death, six others were injured in the fire. Given how Trump and Brassner sparred, a post-humous lawsuit shouldn't come as a shock. After all, Trump loves suing people.