In a stunning about-turn, US President-elect Donald Trump has agreed to pay $25 million (about R360 million) to settle fraud lawsuits over his Trump University real estate seminars.
The lawsuits had dogged Trump, who denied any wrongdoing, throughout his campaign.
He even claimed the judge overseeing two of the cases was biased because he was of Mexican ancestry.
The settlement was announced by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who said it followed repeated refusals by Trump “to settle for even modest amounts of compensation for the victims of his phony university”.
Students claimed they were lured by false promises into paying up to $35 000 (R500 000) to learn Trump’s real estate investing “secrets” from his “hand-picked” instructors.
Three lawsuits will be covered by the deal: two class actions suits in California and a New York case brought by Schneiderman. The agreement must still be approved by US District Judge Gonzalo Curiel in San Diego.
Trump will not admit any wrongdoing under the agreement.
His attorney, Daniel Petrocelli, said Trump decided to settle because he wanted to “move forward”.