Thursday, 02 June 2016 13:42

And, this Navy guy says he was ripped off at Trump University? Really?

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Felicisimo Limon is one of the “students” of “Trump University” who is suing, claiming that he was ripped off.  He appeared today on CNN’s show, “Trump University Battle,” wearing a bright yellow polo shirt with black horizontal bands that made him look like a giant bumblebee. 

Watch Felicisimo’s CNN interview on Youtube before they pull it off: 

This is a MUCH better interview than Felicisimo’s red-shirt interview, where his remarks are completely minimized. 

And now, we know why.

Wearing his bright bumble bee yellow shirt, Felicisimo speaks heavily-accented English kinda sorta, and very quickly, too.  So quickly that I almost just almost missed what he was saying about Trump and Trump University on CNN when he appeared on the show until I heard Felicisimo say about himself: “I am very smart guy, too.  I obtained the highest rank in the military.  The U.S. Navy.”

Flash to photo of Felicisimo wearing a naval uniform with lots of gold braid on it.

That got my attention.  The highest rank in the U.S. Navy is...(I had to go look it up on the internet)...a Fleet Admiral.  

And Felicisimo Limon had even more to say.  Not only is Felicisimo a “very smart guy” and  a U.S. Navy Fleet Admiral, but, he says, “I was even appointed by the U.S. Navy authority to sign multi-billion dollars check of the U.S. government, officially.”

I am not quite sure what U.S. Naval Fleet Admiral Felicisimo Limon means by that sentence, but as a taxpayer, it kinda sorta scares me.

Felicisimo says that even though the lawsuit claims that Trump University cheated him out of $26,000.00, he actually lost $35,000.00, “but I’m still looking for the rest of my receipts because I give it to my lawyer, the class action lawyer in Los Angeles.”

What, and Felicisimo didn’t keep a copy to show to CNN?  Or to anyone?

That is quite an evidentiary oversight for a U.S. Naval Fleet admiral who is “very smart guy, too.”

When CNN questioned Felicisimo as to whether he’d learned anything useful in his Trump University course (an issue which goes to the heart of the lawsuits against Trump), Felicisimo replied: “I never learned anything because, as I told you, I went to real estate state school in Virginia, so everything they [Trump University] talked about, I knew already.”


This is like saying, “I went to Harvard University for undergrad, and when I enrolled at Yale College undergrad, they didn’t teach me anything new– so I want my money back.”

Felicisimo also claims that he was “a real estate agent in Virginia.”

If he was, and held a license, then what would have needed Trump University for?

To become even richer?

I am not saying that Felicisimo isn’t smart.  And I am not saying that Felicisimo isn’t rich.  And I am not saying that Felicisimo doesn’t know the real estate business in Virginia.  But I am starting to understand why Donald Trump is refusing to settle the claims against him and this particular enterprise.

It appears that some basic principles of real estate investment were taught by Trump University.  While $35,000.00 is a lot of money, it may well be comparable to what U.S. Navy Fleet Admira Felicisimo Limon paid when he attended “real estate state school in Virginia.”

$35,000.00 is the price of tuition in lots of places– and you get a lot less for it than even a couple of notebooks. 

I am not saying that all Trump University litigants are like Felicisimo Limon.  How many U.S. Navy Fleet Admirals were there at Trump University?  Probably not very many.

But does Felicisimo really believe that he was a Fleet Admiral?

How many of these were already handling “multi billion dollars by the U.S. government”– whatever that means, exactly?  Probably not very many.

Did Felicisimo really handle “multi billion dollars” of U.S. government money?

But what really rattled my cage was this remark Felicisimo Limon made to CNN: “I have multi billion dollars by the U.S. government that even the pennies I never fed my family with the stolen money.”

I ran the CNN video back a bunch of times, just to make sure.

What does Felicisimo’s statement mean?

What “multi billion dollars?”

What “pennies?”

What “stolen money?”

Felicisimo says that he served 40 years in the U.S. Navy.  But the Houston Chronicle reports this:  “Felicisimo Limon, 76, of El Sobrante, Calif., a retired postal worker, longshoreman and Navy man, said he lost $35,000 to Trump University.”

Talk about multiple pensions! does one “retire” from the U.S. Postal Service, and also work as a longshoreman, and then do 40 years in the U.S. Navy, rising to “the highest rank in the military, the U.S. Navy,”, but still, somehow, not learn to speak basic English?

And if people started coming up to Felicisimo and asking him, “Oh, Great Felicisimo, please share with us your secrets for rising to the highest rank in the military, the U.S. Navy, and become a postal worker and longshoreman, too, and also learn the secrets of real estate investment,” well, why would not Felicisimo not go and seek help from an entrepreneur, like Michael Sexton, and open a business secrets-sharing business called “Felicisimo Limon University?”

Why not?

Why not introduce it with a free seminar, and go on from there?

I mean, a billion dollars is a LOT of money!

And a multi billion dollars is even MORE money!

Why should the U.S. Navy get everything?

And then, there’s Felicisimo’s view of...of...well, let’s call it “modified reverse mortgages.”  Felicisimo told CNN (in his red shirt interview) that “[t]he one tip he does recall came from an instructor who detailed the benefits of paying off unpaid tax debts of elderly people -- keeping them in their homes until they die -- but then taking ownership of their properties.” 

Because that is how a reverse mortgage works.

“‘When I saw that teaching, you had to steal somebody’s house? This is not right,’ Limon said. ‘We were ripped off.’”

Well, I myself have never cared for the notion of a reverse mortgage.  But it’s not “stealing.”

Lots of regular, mainstream banks and financial advisors recommend and sponsor these every day.  Licensed financial advisors and estate planners sometimes recommend them.  And the U.S. Federal Government has declared that this is not “stealing somebody’s house.”

Trump may have less to worry about than we think, in the end.  

Sarah Whalen

sarahw2Sarah Whalen is a university journalism instructor, attorney and author.

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