When, last year, Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort was indicted for tax fraud and money laundering, one of the juicier news tidbits was that Manafort had allegedly spent more than $6 million on improvements to his Hamptons home, which is off Jobs Lane in Water Mill. Middle America was shocked and disbelieving at the amounts. Us? We laughed. Par for the course out here. If there’s a limit on how much can spent on improving and landscaping a Hamptons home, we don’t think anyone’s hit it yet.
Now that the trial is underway, more details have emerged. Michael Regolizio, president of New Leaf Landscape Maintenance in Southampton, testified about how Manafort retained him to care for hundreds of flowers at his house as well as “one of the biggest ponds in the Hamptons.” Four to five times a week, workers trimmed Manafort’s 14-foot hedges, mowed the lawn, cared for the flowers, maintained the YUUUUGE pond, and, this is our favorite part, took care of a white-and-red flower bed by the driveway of stately Manafort Manor in the shape of an M. (We’re bummed this is not visible in the Google Maps image of the property. Scroll down for the larger image.)
Cost of all this? $450,000 over five years.
How about the interior of the house?
Joel Maxwell of Jupiter, Florida-based Big Picture Solutions told the jury that his company installed Apple TVs, networks and other electronics in Manafort’s various homes from 2011 to 2014 at a cost of $2.2 million.
Starting to see where the money goes, America? And that’s not even getting into Manafort’s lavish wardrobe, including the $15,000 ostrich skin jacket.
All this was allegedly paid for, the prosecution says, by monies derived at least in part from tax and bank fraud. Stay tuned: photos of the putting green, pergola, and more have been entered into evidence.