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Trump arrives in Scotland for golf trip as indictments and primary challenges loom

Former US president Donald Trump arrives at Aberdeen International Airport ahead of his visit to the Trump International Golf Links Aberdeen, Scotland. 1 May 2023
Former US president Donald Trump arrives at Aberdeen International Airport ahead of his visit to the Trump International Golf Links Aberdeen, Scotland. 1 May 2023 Copyright AP Photo
Copyright AP Photo
By Euronews with AP
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The former president was recently indicted for his alleged role in a scheme involving hush money payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels.

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As Donald Trump faces legal action and presidential primary challengers at home, he has arrived in the UK for his first visit since 2019, a trip to his controversial Aberdeenshire golf course.

The former president, who was recently indicted for his alleged role in a scheme involving hush money payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels, touched down at Aberdeen airport this morning. “It’s great to be home,” he said to assembled reporters. “This was my mother’s home.” He didn't take any qestions from the media. 

According to a post on his own social media platform Truth Social, the trip will also see Trump open a new facility.

“Will be leaving for Scotland & Ireland soon in order to see and inspect my great properties there,” he wrote. 

“The Golf Courses and Hotels are among the Greatest in the World - Turnberry and Aberdeen, in Scotland, and Doonbeg, in Ireland. Will be meeting with many wonderful friends, and cutting a ribbon for a new and SPECTACULAR Second Course in Aberdeen.

“Very exciting despite the fact that it is ‘MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN’ that is on my mind, in fact, America will be GREATER THAN EVER BEFORE!!!”

Trump’s first stop will be the Trump International Golf Links in Menie, a resort that has been a magnet for trouble since before it was built. The planning permission process that ultimately approved the project’s construction remains deeply controversial, as does the alleged role of then-Scottish government figures in securing Trump’s investment.

However, the resort – like many of Trump’s properties – has reported a severe deficit. His Ayrshire resort, Trump Turnberry, has fared even worse, with members of the former president’s family blaming Brexit for its financial struggles.

Before he became president, Trump also failed in an attempt to block the Scottish government from approving a plan to construct an offshore wind farm near his Aberdeenshire facility. In 2019, he was ordered to pay the government’s legal costs.

Trump is visiting Scotland at a point of severe legal peril. Having been arraigned in the Stormy Daniels case, he is facing the possibility of at least one other criminal indictment this summer in the form of an election interference investigation in Fulton County, Georgia.

Meanwhile, his former vice president, Mike Pence, last week testified to a grand jury investigating Trump’s part in inciting the 6 January attack on the US Capitol. The former president failed to block Pence’s testimony based on dubious legal claims.

Despite these problems, Trump is running for another term in the 2024 election. He so far faces a smattering of declared primary opponents, including his former UN ambassador, Nikki Haley. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, widely considered his strongest potential challenger, has himself visited the UK in the past week for meetings with government ministers and business leaders.

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