05/14/2013 11:27 am ET

Donald Trump Testimony: Chicago Real Estate Deal At Center Of Mogul's Trump Tower Civil Trial


Thanks to "The Apprentice," Donald Trump is now known as much for his reality TV catchphrase "You're fired!" as he is for the sprawling real estate empire.

On Tuesday, "The Donald" will take his turn in the hot seat where he's expected to testify in a breach of contract lawsuit related to his Chicago Trump Tower property at 401 N. Wabash Ave.

The civil trial stems from a lawsuit filed by 87-year-old investor Jacqueline Goldberg over what she claims is a bait-and-switch, the Daily Herald reports.

In 2006, Goldberg bought two condos for around $1 million apiece at the Trump International Hotel & Tower based on a Trump marketing campaign that her attorneys claim made promises it never delivered on.

Goldberg clams the marketing campaign touted perks for the hotel's investors, including a revenue sharing plan that would reward investors with profits from hotel operations like the banquet hall, according to the Tribune. Instead, Goldberg claims Trump yanked the deal at the last minute.

"Trump totally changed the deal," Goldberg's attorney, Shelly Kulwin told the Tribune. Kulwin indicated Trump was solely responsible for all the development decisions at Trump Tower. "He was the sole and ultimate authority on everything Trump."

The Associated Press reports Trump could testify over several days at the federal trial, which it notes will spotlight the celeb real estate mogul's management style.

While Trump's public persona is one of a deal maker and shot caller, the Daily Herald reports in opening statements Monday, Trump's attorney Stephen Novack tried to deflect blame from his client by countering the image of Trump as a "hands-on executive."

"Donald Trump delegates most decisions," Novack said, noting the billionaire had 2,500 employees. "It would be impossible for him to be in the details of each project."

Goldberg is seeking a return of her more than half-million dollar deposit, among other damages. Had the elderly investor gone through with the deal, she would have been one-time neighbors with NBA champ Juwan Howard and current Bulls star/playoffs benchwarmer Derrick Rose.



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