Trump, Spanish chef settle court battle
WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump and a Spanish chef settled a legal battle over a scrapped deal to open a restaurant in the Trump International Hotel in Washington.
In a joint statement on Friday, the President’s son Donald Jr., who manages the Trump Organisation, and the chef Jose Andres’ company, ThinkFoodGroup (TFG), announced a “friendly” agreement after almost two years of legal disputes, but did not reveal the terms of the agreement, which they described as confidential, Efe news reported.
“I am pleased that we were able to resolve our differences and move forward cooperatively, as friends. I have great respect for the Trump Organization’s commitment to excellence in redeveloping the Old Post Office (the historic building restored as Trump International Hotel in Washington),” Andres said.
“I am glad that we are able to put this matter behind us and move forward as friends,” Donald Trump Jr. said.
The President and Andres have been in litigation since 2015, after it was agreed that the renowned chef would open a restaurant in the luxurious new hotel.
However, the chef pulled out of the deal after the billionaire in June 2015, while seeking the Republican presidential nomination, referred to Mexican immigrants as “drug dealers and rapists”, which the attorneys of Andres said would make it impossible for him to hire Hispanic staff or attract community patrons.
The magnate filed suit against Andres for $10 million for breaking the contract and causing him losses and damages worth millions of dollars.
The Spanish chef filed a countersuit for $8 million for the costs of developing the restaurant.