Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Election

Moderators: Elvis, DrVolin, Jeff

Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:06 pm


His entire fraudulent shitpire is in flames.

New York State just revealed a criminal investigation into Donald trump’s history of insurance fraud, and it’s going about it in a novel way. Instead of trying to get the incriminating records by subpoenaing the trump Organization, which might not work, New York is instead subpoenaing the trump Organization’s longtime insurance broker. The broker is surely willing to cooperate in order to remain in good standing with the state.

New York State regulators have issued an expansive subpoena to the trump Organization's longtime insurance broker, the first step in an investigation of insurance policies and claims involving trump's family business, NYT reports.

Trump Organization’s Insurance Policies Under Scrutiny in New York

March 5, 2019
The Trump Organization, the president’s family business, is facing scrutiny from multiple fronts — federal prosecutors, congressional Democrats, and now, insurance regulators.Sarah Silbiger/The New York Times

The Trump Organization, the president’s family business, is facing scrutiny from multiple fronts — federal prosecutors, congressional Democrats, and now, insurance regulators.Sarah Silbiger/The New York Times
[What you need to know to start the day: Get New York Today in your inbox.]

New York State regulators have issued an expansive subpoena to the Trump Organization’s longtime insurance broker, the first step in an investigation of insurance policies and claims involving President Trump’s family business, according to the company and a person briefed on the matter.

The subpoena was served late Monday on the company, Aon, one of the largest insurance brokerage firms in the world, as part of an inquiry by the New York State Department of Financial Services.

It came just days after Michael D. Cohen, Mr. Trump’s former fixer and lawyer, indicated in congressional testimony that the Trump Organization inflated the value of its assets to insurance companies.

The subpoena is the latest sign that the Trump Organization is facing scrutiny from multiple fronts — federal prosecutors, congressional Democrats, and now, insurance regulators.

The Department of Financial Services does not conduct criminal investigations, nor does it have authority over Mr. Trump or the Trump Organization, but it can refer any possible illegal activity to prosecutors.

The federal prosecutors in Manhattan have been investigating the Trump Organization’s role in hush money payments to women who claimed to have affairs with Mr. Trump. Mr. Cohen, who pleaded guilty to federal crimes in connection with those payments, has also told the prosecutors about irregularities in the company’s insurance practices, The New York Times reported last month.

While the prosecutors are largely viewed as independent, the president and his allies have dismissed much of the other scrutiny as politically motivated.

The subpoena from the state agency that regulates insurance, which is part of the administration of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, a Democrat and vocal critic of Mr. Trump, landed on the same day that even broader scrutiny came to bear on the president, his administration and his business from House Democrats.

The House Judiciary Committee on Monday unleashed a blizzard of 81 letters demanding documents from people and businesses, including President Trump’s company and several of his family members, kicking off the committee’s sweeping investigation into possible obstruction of justice, corruption and abuse of power by Mr. Trump.

The subpoena that was served on Aon contains no indication that the company or any of its employees engaged in misconduct, the person said. Nor does it specify any possible wrongdoing that is the focus of the inquiry by state regulators.

Insurance brokers such as Aon help companies evaluate their risk and connect them with underwriters, the companies that offer the actual coverage. For this service, the brokers receive a fee or commission, usually paid by the client.

The nine-page subpoena demands a broad range of materials regarding Aon’s business with Mr. Trump and the Trump Organization dating back to 2009, according to the person briefed on the matter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss it publicly.

Among other things, it seeks copies of all communications between Aon and Mr. Trump and the Trump Organization, as well as all internal Aon documents relating to Mr. Trump and the company, the person said.

The regulators are also looking at compensation for the current and former Aon employees who handled the Trump Organization account, seeking information about their incentives, bonus payments or commissions. They are seeking similar contracts and agreements between Aon and Mr. Trump.

A spokeswoman for Aon, Donna Mirandola, said the company intended to cooperate, adding: “We do not comment on specific client matters.” The White House referred a request for comment to the Trump Organization, which did not respond to requests for comment. A spokesman for the Department of Financial Services declined to comment.

The Department of Financial Services is a powerful agency that regulates and supervises the insurance industry — including brokers, brokerage firms and underwriters in New York — as well as banking and other financial institutions.

The agency’s authority is limited to civil regulatory actions, although it can refer possible criminal conduct to the office of a local district attorney or the State Attorney General.

However, under the New York State insurance law, the department, headed by Acting Superintendent Linda A. Lacewell, can take action against the companies and individuals it regulates, including brokers and underwriters. It can issue fines or a range of other penalties, including revoking their licenses to do business in New York.

This is not the first time that the agency has examined the business practices involving the Trump Organization. In 2017, the agency scrutinized the company’s long relationship with Deutsche Bank, which the agency regulates and which is one of the president’s few lenders on Wall Street. The examination concluded without the agency taking any action against the bank.

Mr. Cohen’s testimony, however, provides additional fuel to advance the insurance inquiry.

At a hearing in front of the House Oversight Committee last week, when asked by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a New York Democrat, whether the president ever inflated his assets to an insurance company, Mr. Cohen simply replied, “Yes.”

The New York regulators are requesting copies of the insurance policies ultimately issued to Mr. Trump and the Trump Organization, as well as applications and financial statements used to secure the policies, the person said.

The subpoena requests that the materials — undoubtedly a vast swath of documents, data, emails, policies and other records — be turned over by March 19. The regulators will likely then issue additional subpoenas or requests to the underwriters and possibly other companies and individuals identified in response to this subpoena.

It could take the agency’s investigators months to analyze all the information they collect.

Maggie Haberman and Mary Williams Walsh contributed reporting. ... poena.html

Timeline you might be interested in.

For no particular reason. You be the judge as to whether or not we should

1970s & 1980s: wave of Russian criminals arrive in New York and begin interfacing with established American organized crime networks (La Cosa Nostra/The Five Families aka Bonanno, Genovese, Colombo, Lucchese, Gambino) (source)

1977: KGB reportedly opens file on Donald Trump (source).

1979: Construction begins on Trump Tower. Trump purchases overpriced concrete from mafia bosses Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno and Paul Castellano of the Genovese and Gambino crime families (respectively). (source)

1980: Trump's mentor, Roy Cohn, introduces Donald to Roger Stone. (source)

1982: New York City Housing Commissioner Anthony Gliedman received what he described as an “abusive and profane” call from someone angry that Gliedman had opposed Trump’s request for a $20 million tax abatement. Gliedman reported the call to the FBI, saying the caller was “threatening his life.” (source)

June 3, 1983: Rudy Giuliani becomes US attorney for SDNY

January, 1984: Vladimir Alexandrovich Kryuchkov, First Chief Directorate of the KGB arm responsible for gathering foreign intelligence, urges his officers to be more creative with agent recruitment - and to use money and flattery vs. alignment with Soviet ideology. Additionally, he gives the directive to find "U.S. targets to cultivate or, at the very least, official contacts...The main effort must be concentrated on acquiring valuable agents." (source)

1984: Russian émigré David Bogatin pays cash for five apartments in Trump Tower. (source). Bogatin's brother ran a $150 million stock scam with Russian mafia boss Semion Mogilevich (source)

1985: Trump reportedly “apoplectic” when he loses bid to re-develop the Coliseum at Columbus Circle to Salomon Brothers-backed Mort Zuckerman. (source) More on Trump’s proposal here.

October 1985: Trump's helicopter pilot indicted on drug trafficking charges. Trump doesn't fire him. Instead, he leases his personally-owned unit in Trump Plaza Apartments to him with an agreement of half the rent is to be paid in cash, the other half in unspecified helicopter services. Trump also writes a letter on behalf of his pilot (Weichselbaum), calling him "a credit to the community.” Who does the case end up with? Federal judge Maryanne Trump, Donald's sister. (source)

Autumn, 1986: Trump meets Soviet ambassador Yuri Dubinin. And per Trump's own account in Art of the Deal, “One thing led to another, and now I’m talking about building a large luxury hotel, across the street from the Kremlin, in partnership with the Soviet government.” (source)

1986: Trump makes the rounds in the news offering to negotiate with the Russians (source), and also angles for a Soviet posting in the Reagan administration (source)

March 16, 1987: Bogatin (who had purchased multiple apartments in Trump Tower for cash) pleads guilty to taking part in a massive gasoline-bootlegging scheme with Russian mobsters. The government seized his five condos at Trump Tower, because he'd used them to “launder money, to shelter and hide assets.” A Senate investigation into organized crime later revealed that Bogatin was a leading figure in the Russian mob in New York. (from New Republic)

April 3, 1987: Trump excluded from bidding on Australian casino deal because of mafia connections (per Australian police) (source)

July 4, 1987: Trump flies to the USSR for the first time after being personally invited - the trip is arranged by the Soviet government (source).

1988: Trump starts talking about running for president on Oprah (source).

1988: Trump purchases a yacht from Adnan Khashoggi, the uncle of Jamal Khashoggi (source) (source)

October 11, 1989: helicopter crashes with 3 Trump casino execs aboard (source). Trump claimed he was supposed to be on it, but then changed his mind at the last minute. (source) After their deaths, he blamed them for the failure of his Atlantic City casino (source) The helicopter's pilot was identified by the state police as Robert Kent of Ronkonkoma, L.I., and its co-pilot as Lawrence Diener of Westbury, L.I. b/b

1990: Wall Street bond house Salomon Brothers advises institutional clients to sell bonds issue from Trump's Castle Casino in Atlantic City, due to debt and performance concerns. (source)

1991: Trump declares bankruptcy (source)

1991: Trump sells his yacht to Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal (source) (source)

1992: Trump declares bankruptcy an additional 3 times stemming from various properties he's over-leveraged. (source)

1994: Trump allegedly rapes and beats a 13-year-old girl at a party with Jeffrey Epstein, multiple times. In the filed complaint, the 13-year-old was threatened to be "disappeared" like another young girl had been if she told anyone. (source)

October 20, 1994: Christine Seymour, Roy Cohn's secretary (Cohn was Trump's mentor), who was set to publish a tell-all book, dies in head-on collision with tractor trailer (source)

1995: Trump reportedly in Moscow to discuss matters related to Okhotny Ryad underground mall on Manezh Square. (source)

1995: Trump sells Plaza Hotel to Alwaleed bin Talal (source)

1996: Trump goes to Russia with Howard Lorber (source). Lorber later donated to the Trump inaugural fund (source).

1998: Trump Taj Mahal fined for currency transaction reporting violations (source)

1999: Trump's first run for president (source)

2000/2001: Mark Burnett in negotiations with Putin for a show called "Destination Mir." (source)

2002: Mark Burnett begins talks with Trump regarding The Apprentice. (source)

2002 - 2011: The Bayrock Group partners with the Trump Organization on developments including the Trump SoHo hotel (source). Principals in the group include Felix Sater - believed to be connected with Semion Mogilevich (source) - and Tevfik Arif (source).

2004: Trump declares bankruptcy again. (source)

Spring 2004: The Apprentice debuts (source)

May 2004: Diamond dealer and former Trump Tower tenant (1 year prior he'd lived right below Kellyanne Conway) Eduard Nektalov is shot on 6th Avenue (source). He was reportedly cooperating with federal authorities on a money laundering investigation (source) More on money laundering and Trump properties here.

2005: at the same time Trump is unable to get a 25 million pound loan from Bank of Scotland due to being a credit risk (source), Deutsche Bank (who later is hit with massive fines for money laundering) loans Trump nearly one billion dollars. Trump's banker at Deutsche Bank is Justice Kennedy's son. (source).

2006: Felix Sater escorts the Trump children during their trip to Russia (according to Sater) (source). Later, in emails to Michael Cohen, Sater says that he'd arranged for Ivanka to sit in Putin's chair. (source).

2006: Paul Manafort buys unit in Trump Tower (source).

2006 - 2009: Trump makes multiple attempts (and fails) to get a loan from the Bank of Scotland to purchase Hamilton Hall. The bank executive "expressed concern that Trump would hold the bank to 'future ransom'” (source)

2007 - 2016: Buyers tied to Russia make 86 cash purchases at Trump properties. (source)

2008: Junior brags that they're getting a lot of money from Russia. (source)

2008: Russian oligarch buys a Palm Beach mansion from Trump, paying twice the value (source).

August 27, 2008: a small-time scam artist transfers a Beverly Hills, California, mansion to Donald Trump for $0. (source)

November 2008: Unable to meet his obligations for the nearly 1 billion dollar loan they gave him, Trump sues Deutsche Bank saying he shouldn't have to make good on his promise because of the economic crash. (source)

2009: Trump declares bankruptcy again. (source)

2009: a lawyer representing Trump Atlantic City casino creditors says he got threatening phone calls. The FBI traced one of them to a payphone outside the “Late Show With David Letterman,” where Trump was appearing.
“My name is Carmine,” the caller told the lawyer, Kristopher Hansen. “I don’t know why you’re fucking with Mr. Trump but if you keep fucking with Mr. Trump, we know where you live and we’re going to your house for your wife and kids.” (source)

July 23, 2009: Stormy Daniels' political advisor's car explodes (source). This was approximately 3 years after her affair with Trump (source).

August 2009: After multiple tries dating back to 2006, Trump denied a final time for loan for 25 million pounds from Bank of Scotland because the bank considered it "too risky." (source)

2010: Tevfik Arif, a principal of the Bayrock Group - which at this time is partnering with the Trump organization on a variety of projects - is arrested in a Turkish prostitution sting. (source). Charges were later dropped by Turkish authorities.

July 25, 2011: President Obama issues executive order declaring organized crime a national security emergency. (source)

2011 - 2015: Deutsche Bank, who 5 years previous had given Donald Trump nearly 1 billion dollars when Bank of Scotland wouldn't loan him 25 million pounds, is laundering billions of dollars with the help of Russians. (source)

2011: Eric Trump brags that they have access to millions of dollars from Russians. (source)

2011 - 2015: Donald Trump begins paying for his properties with hundreds of millions of dollars in cash. (source)

January 1, 2012: former Trump bodyguard dies from apparent overdose (source).

2013: Trump walks out of a BBC Panorama interview when asked about his connections with Felix Sater. (source)

April 16, 2013: Preet Bharara, then US attorney for SDNY, announces charges against massive Russian organized crime ring operating out of Trump Tower. (source)

June 16, 2013: Trump announces Miss Universe pageant will be in Moscow. (source)

November 9, 2013: Miss Universe pageant (source). One of the fugitives indicted in the Trump Tower organized crime ring in April, ALIMZHAN TOKHTAKHOUNOV, is a guest of honor there. (source)

February 10, 2014: Trump praises Putin on Fox & Friends. (source)

March 6, 2015: Trump Taj Mahal fined for money laundering. (source)

2015: Michael Cohen threatens a reporter covering Trump's divorce with Ivana. “I’m warning you, tread very fucking lightly, because what I’m going to do to you is going to be fucking disgusting,” the Daily Beast’s Tim Mak, recalled Cohen telling him. “You write a story that has Mr. Trump’s name in it, with the word ‘rape,’ and I’m going to mess your life up … for as long as you’re on this frickin’ planet.” (source) (source)

April 18, 2015: Trump's former pilot dies in head-on collision (source).

November 3, 2015: Felix Sater, who is believed to work for Semion Mogilevich (source) writes Michael Cohen stating that he'll get buy-in from Putin and that they'll engineer Trump's presidency. (source)

November 5, 2015: former head of RT Mikhail Lesin found dead in DC hotel room with blunt force trauma to head, neck and torso. He had a meeting with DOJ scheduled for following day. (source)

January 23, 2016: Trump tells the crowd at a rally that he could shoot someone in the middle of 5th Avenue and not lose voters. (source)

February 23, 2016: Trump tells the crowd at a rally that he'd like to punch a protestor in the face, and "I love the old days. You know what they used to do to guys like that when they were in a place like this? They’d be carried out on a stretcher, folks.” (source)

March 29, 2016: Paul Manafort joins Trump campaign. (source)

April - May 2016: George Papadopoulos in communication with “high ranking Russian official” in an attempt to set up meetings between Trump team and Russian reps, w/the promise “that the Kremlin had 'dirt' on Hillary Clinton in the form of “thousands of emails…” (source)

May 2016: Stephen Schwarzman flies to Riyadh to meet with Mohammed bin Salman - then the deputy crown prince of Saudi Arabia - about infrastructure, and presumably the $20 billion fund that's announced a year later. (source) More on Schwarzman's relationship with Trump, and Saudi Arabia here. More on Schwarzman's links to Russia and Rosneft here.

Summer 2016: Stefan Halper, an FBI informant, approaches Trump campaign officials. (source)

June 9, 2016: Trump Tower meeting with Russians, Manafort, Kushner, Don Jr.. (source). Present at the meeting was Nataliya Veselnitskaya, who at the time was representing Prevezon (source), a company implicated in a money-laundering case at SDNY (source)

June 14, 2016: News breaks that the DNC has been hacked by Russians. (source)

June 14, 2016: Michael Cohen cancels his planned trip to Moscow to discuss Trump Tower Moscow (source)

Sometime after July 19, 2016: Trump warned by FBI that Russians will try to infiltrate campaign. (source)

September, 2016: Trump and Cohen discuss hush money and contingency for if guy gets hit by a truck. (source)

October 31, 2016: Mother Jones reports "A Veteran Spy Has Given the FBI Information Alleging a Russian Operation to Cultivate Donald Trump"

November 7, 2016 (one day before election day): Connie Watton, maid of Stephen Schwarzman - a Trump AND Kremlin friend - is pushed in front of a subway. (source) The woman who pushed her is assigned defense attorney Mathew Mari, known for his legal work for the Bonanno crime family. More on Schwarzman's relationship with Trump, and Saudi Arabia here. More on Schwarzman's links to Russia and Rosneft here. Schwarzman had also financed Kushner projects and gave Jared Kushner a loan (source).

November 8, 2016 (election day): Russian diplomat Sergei Krivov found unconscious at the Russian Consulate in New York and died on the scene. (source)

December 2016: FSB officers arrested in Russia. (source)

December 2016: Jared Kushner instructs Michael Flynn to sabotage US foreign policy. (source)

December 1 or 2, 2016: Kushner tries to set up secret back channel with Russians using Russians' secure facilities. (source)

December 1, 2016: Jared Kushner and Michael Flynn meet with Sergei Kislyak at Trump Tower (source)

December 13-14, 2016 (date not confirmed): Jared Kushner meets with Sergey Gorkov, "a graduate of the academy of the Federal Security Service, or FSB, the domestic intelligence arm of the former Soviet KGB, who was appointed by Putin to the post less than a year before his encounter with Kushner." (source)

December 19, 2016: Russia's ambassador to Turkey, Andrei Karlov, is killed. (source)

December 19, 2016: Russian diplomat to Latin America, Peter Polshikov, is killed. (source)

December 20, 2016: Methbot white paper published. (source)

December 29, 2016: Obama expels 35 Russian diplomats. (source)

December 29, 2016: KT McFarland sends email stating that "If there is a tit-for-tat escalation Trump will have difficulty improving relations with Russia, which has just thrown U.S.A. election to him," (source)

December 29, 2016: Flynn calls Kislyak to discuss the expelling of the diplomates and asks that the Russians not retaliate. (source)

January 6, 2017: Trump, McFarland, Pence, Flynn, Priebus, Pompeo and Bossert briefed with classified intelligence report by Brennan, Clapper, Comey. (source) That same day, DNI releases this report.

January 9, 2017: Russian Consul in Athens, Greece, Andrei Malanin, found dead in his apartment (source)

January 10, 2017: Buzzfeed publishes Steele Dossier. (source)

January 24, 2017: Peter Strzok interviews Michael Flynn. (source)

January 27, 2017: Russia's Ambassador to India, Alexander Kadakin, dies. (source)

February 2017: Trump's bodyguard, a Trump Organization lawyer and a third man raid Harold Bornstein's office, taking Trump's medical records. (source)

February 20, 2017: Vitaly Churkin, Russia's ambassador to the UN, dies suddenly in New York (source)

March 2, 2017: Ukrainian businessman with links to Trump found dead from undetermined causes. Oronov was Michael Cohen's brother's father-in-law, and Cohen did business with him. (source)

March 11, 2017: Trump fires Preet Bharara, who as US Attorney of SDNY had led the breakup of a massive Russian organized crime ring operating out of Trump Tower. (source)

March 16, 2017: laptop stolen from Secret Service agent's car while parked in her driveway. The laptop contained highly sensitive information including floor plans and evacuation protocol for Trump Tower. (source)

March 21, 2017: A lawyer for a Putin-foe, Nikolai Gorokhov, reportedly thrown from a window in Moscow. Gorokhov was set to testify as a U.S. government witness in a money laundering case initiated by SDNY (led by Preet Bahrara). (source) "The alleged vehicle by which these dirty assets were washed clean was a Cyprus-registered company called Prevezon Holdings Ltd." (source) Prevezon was also represented by Nataliya Veselnitskaya at the time that she attended the Trump Tower meeting in June of 2016. (source)

March 23, 2017: former Russian MP, Denis Voronenkov, shot dead in Kiev. (source)

March 30, 2017: FBI raids Trump-linked casino in Saipan. (source)

March 30, 2017: Mike Flynn asks for immunity. (source)

May 1, 2017: Scott Christianson, investigative reporter for McClatchy, publishes this: ... 54324.html

May 9, 2017: Trump fires FBI director James Comey. (source)

May 10: 2017: Subpoenas issued to Michael Flynn by Senate Intelligence Committee. (source)

May 10, 2017: closed-door meeting in Oval Office with Russians. (source)

May 10, 2017: Roger Ailes falls in his home at Palm Beach Country. (source)

May 11, 2017: FBI raids GOP consulting firm in Maryland. (source)

May 14, 2017: Scott Christianson dies after falling down the stairs at his home (source)

May 14 2017: Republic operative Peter Smith found dead in Minnesota 10 days after speaking with WSJ (source)
Smith had said he'd been working with Michael Flynn (source).

May 17, 2017: Robert Mueller appointed special counsel (source).

May 18, 2017: Roger Ailes dies from head injury he'd sustained 8 days earlier (source).

May 20-21, 2017: Trump takes his first overseas trip as president to Saudi Arabia. During this trip, it's announced that Blackstone, led by Stephen Schwarzman, will manage Saudi Arabia's $20 billion investment fund. (source) Most of the investment will be in US infrastructure (source) During that trip, Trump also meets with Kirill Dmitriev of VEB bank (source)

July 4, 2017: body washes up on shore of Trump golf course in California. (source) (source)

July 26, 2017: Paul Manafort's home raided (source)

July 27, 2017: George Papadopoulos arrested. (source)

August 3, 2017: Secret Service kicked out of Trump Tower (source).

August 23, 2017: Russian ambassador to Sudan, Mirgayas Shirinsky, found dead. (source)

September 1, 2017: fire at Russian consulate in San Francisco (source).

September 14, 2017: Junior ditches Secret Service to go to Canada (source).

September 25, 2017: Richard Beckler, Trump's appointee as General Counsel of GSA dies (source). Beckler is the GSA staff member who'd assured Trump that requests for materials/emails from special counsel would not be honored (source).

September 27, 2017: Paul Horner, fake news writer who took credit for Trump’s win, dies of apparent overdose (source)

October 2017: Trump muses that he'll likely get to place 4 justices on the Supreme Court because of future health issues they may have (source).

October 16, 2017: Panama Papers journalist killed with a car bomb. (source)

October 30, 2017: Papadopoulos guilty plea revealed (source)

November 3, 2017: Alex van der Zwaan is interviewed by the FBI. (source)

November 4, 2017: Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman consolidates power and arrests several princes, including Prince Alwaleed bin-Talal. (source) Trump had previously sold his yacht (1991) and the Plaza Hotel to Alwaleed bin-Talal (source).

November 2017: Trump picks fights with North Korea. (source)

November 17, 2017: Brett Kavanaugh added to short list of SCOTUS nominees. (source)

December 1, 2017: Michael Flynn pleads guilty to lying to the FBI. (source)

December 5, 2017: It's reported that Deutsche Bank received subpoena from Robert Mueller (source) In-depth Rachel Maddow segment on Deutsche Bank and the subpoena here.

December 16, 2017: Trump learns that Mueller has in his possession all of their transition emails on the .gov domain, obtained via the GSA. (source)

December 30, 2017: Fire at home linked to Ivanka's diamond business (source).

January 8, 2018: Fire at Trump Tower (source)

January 20, 2018: Former spokesman for Rick Gates, Glenn Selig, dies in Afghanistan hotel attack. Selig was a well-known Tampa Bay Area TV anchor. (source)

January 27, 2018: Steve Wynn resigns as RNC finance chair amid sexual assault allegations (source).

January 31, 2018: chartered train carrying GOP lawmakers to retreat crashes into truck (source).

February 16, 2018: Indictment of 12 Russians, outlining their methods of election interference (indictment sealed). (source)

February 20, 2018: Alex van der Zwaan pleads guilty to making false statements to FBI. (source)

February 22, 2018: Paul Manafort and Richard Gates indicted. (source)

February 23 - 27, 2018: Trump Tower Panama standoff with physical altercations and armed guards (source).

Week of March 4 - 10, 2018 (date unclear): FBI raids Trump-linked casino in Saipan a second time. (source)

March 4, 2018: Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, found poisoned on a park bench in Salisbury. (source)

April 7, 2018: ANOTHER Trump Tower Fire - art dealer dies; Michael Cohen texts Dennis Shields with a warning to get out (source).

April 9, 2018: FBI raids Michael Cohen's home, hotel room, and office (source).

April 13, 2018: RNC Finance Chair Elliot Broidy resigns in midst hush money payoff scandal (source).

April 16, 2018: Matthew Mellon (finance chair, NY RNC, and who made his fortune in cryptocurrency) dies of apparent overdose (source).

April 24, 2018: Devin Nunes sends classified letter to Jeff Sessions regarding FBI informant (source) who is later revealed to be Stefan Halper. (source)

April 28, 2018: Fire at Trump Tower Azerbaijan (source).

Week of April 29, 2018: Devin Nunes issues subpoena to DOJ seeking information about FBI informant (later revealed to be Stefan Halper). (source)

June 22, 2018: Trump-backed Katie Arrington seriously injured in head-in collision (source).

June 27, 2018: Justice Kennedy, whose son was Donald Trump's banker, unexpectedly announces retirement. (source) Trump and Kennedy reportedly had a special relationship (source).

July 4, 2018: delegation of Republicans go to Moscow. (source)

July 9, 2018: Brett Kavanaugh nominated to SCOTUS. (source)

July 14, 2018: Indictment of 12 Russians/internet research agency unsealed (source).

July 16, 2018: Maria Butina criminal complaint unsealed. (source)

July 16, 2018: Trump meets with Putin in Helsinki. (source)

July 17, 2018: Secret Service agent dies in Scotland. After falling ill at Trump's golf course in Turnberry, he died the day after the Helsinki meeting (source).

July 25, 2018: dead body found in waters off Trump NYC golf course (source).

August 6, 2018: Rand Paul goes to Russia. (source)

August 10, 2018: Dennis Shields - the same guy Cohen texted back in April - found dead in Trump Tower (source)

August 15, 2018: Trump revokes John Brennan's security clearance. (source)

August 16, 2018: mystery case before grand jury initiated. (source)

October 2, 2018: Jamal Khashoggi murdered on orders from Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. (source) Trump later disputes the findings of the CIA and stands with MBS, stating that too much money is at stake. (source)

October 3, 2018: Nikki Hailey resigns. (source)

October 3, 2018: The Russian deputy attorney general (Saak Karapetyan) who reportedly directed Natalya Veselnitskaya (the lawyer who met with the Trump campaign in Trump Tower) dies in a helicopter crash (source). It was later reported that the pilot of the helicopter had been shot. (source)

October 9, 2018: Internet Research Agency (aka the troll farm) named in DOJ indictment (unsealed July 14, 2018) set on fire. (source)

October 17, 2018: Don McGahn resigns. (source)

October 19, 2018: "Project Lahkta" (Russian election interference) criminal complaint unsealed (source)

October 21, 2018: John Bolton goes to Russia to meet with Putin. (source)

October 22 - 27, 2018: week of terror begins with bombs at the home of George Soros. (source). It was followed by bombs sent to Bill and Hillary Clinton (Oct. 23); Barack Obama, CNN, John Brennan, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Eric Holder and Maxine Waters (October 24); Robert de Niro and Joe Biden (October 25); and Cory Booker, James Clapper, Kamala Harris, and Tom Steyer (October 26). It ends with mass shooting at Tree of Life synagogue on October 27 (source).

October 30, 2018: Whitey Bulger killed. (source)

November 27, 2018: Methbot indictment unsealed at EDNY. (source)

November 29, 2018: Michael Cohen pleads guilty. (source)

November 29, 2018: Massive raid at Deutsche Bank. (source)

December 4, 2018: Epstein trial set to begin. It is settled at the last minute, avoiding testimony from witnesses. (source)

December 22, 2018: Government shuts down. (source)

December 26, 2018: Ex-KGB chief Oleg Erovinkin, who was suspected of helping draft the Trump dossier, found dead in the back of his car. (source)

January 5, 2019: residents near Epstein's private island report seeing a massive fire. (source)

January 8, 2019: it's learned that Manafort passed polling data to Kilimnik in the summer of 2016. (source)

January 25, 2019: Roger Stone arrested and indicted. (source) (source)

February 21, 2019: Judge rules that federal prosecutors (including Trump labor secretary Alex Acosta) broke the law in Epstein case. (source)

February 27, 2019: Michael Cohen testifies before Congress that Trump had directed him to threaten people as many as 500 times when he worked for him. (source) He also testifies that Felix Sater's office had been located on the 26th floor of Trump Tower - the same floor as Trump's office - and, in the location that would eventually become Cohen's office. (source) ... Rs.twitter
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:24 pm


New Trump Probe Looks a Lot Like a RICO Investigation
The crimes reportedly under investigation—money laundering, fraud, conspiracy—could amount to a criminal enterprise. That’s how my team of prosecutors put away Detroit’s mayor.
Barbara McQuade

02.08.19 4:38 AM ET

Referring to a cooperator as a “rat,” President Trump sometimes sounds like a mob boss. He may ultimately be prosecuted like one, too.

While some reports say that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation is winding down, it appears that another investigation is just gearing up. According to reports in The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times, a grand jury in the Southern District of New York recently issued a subpoena to the Trump inaugural committee, seeking documents relating to donors and spending. According to reports, the subpoena indicates that prosecutors are investigating conspiracy against the United States, false statements, mail fraud, wire fraud, money laundering and violations of campaign finance and inaugural committee laws. In addition, CNN has reported that federal prosecutors in Manhattan have expressed interest in interviewing executives from the Trump Organization.

It is impossible to know exactly what the federal prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating, but the wide array of crimes brings to mind a case that was prosecuted in Detroit when I served as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan. Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and several of his associates were convicted under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, also known as RICO.

RICO is a statute that was passed in 1970 to prosecute organized crime. Until then, mob bosses would often insulate themselves from criminal exposure by directing underlings to commit crimes. In response, Congress enacted RICO, which, among other things, makes it a crime for any person associated with an enterprise to participate, directly or indirectly, in the conduct of the enterprise’s affairs through a pattern of racketeering activity. Pattern of racketeering activity is defined as two or more acts from a list of criminal offenses, such as mail fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering, some of the very same crimes that SDNY prosecutors are reportedly now investigating. The penalties for violating RICO are heavy–up to 20 years in prison and forfeiture of the proceeds of the racketeering activity.

“Either one of those Trump entities could potentially be considered an ‘enterprise’ for purposes of a RICO charge, if the evidence supported it.”
In Kilpatrick’s case, he and others were charged with RICO conspiracy. The alleged enterprise in his case was an association of the former mayor, his father, a contractor, and certain members of his administration. The indictment alleged that the group constituted an ongoing organization whose members functioned as a continuing unit for a common purpose of achieving the objectives of the enterprise. Those objectives were to financially enrich the members of the enterprise, their associates, and their family members by extortion, bribery, fraud, and obstruction of justice.

Kilpatrick was convicted at trial based on a great deal of evidence: the testimony of witnesses, bank records, business documents and text messages that corroborated the witness testimony. In SDNY’s investigation into the Trump inaugural committee and the Trump Organization, the evidence is unknown, and it may be that the investigation yields no charges. But it is not a stretch to think that the prosecutors are at least considering whether they can prove the type of enterprise and pattern of predicate acts that would amount to a RICO charge.

I have been asked before about whether the special counsel’s investigation could result in RICO charges, and I have thought that RICO was a bridge too far. Mueller’s investigation may yet uncover a conspiracy with Russia or WikiLeaks or obstruction of justice, but election interference does not seem to encompass the ongoing pattern of disparate crimes that RICO was intended to capture. Now that the Trump inaugural committee or the Trump Organization may be targets of SDNY’s investigation, however, the theory does not seem so far-fetched. Either one of those Trump entities could potentially be considered an “enterprise” for purposes of a RICO charge, if the evidence supported it. So, too, could a collection of Trump and his associates be considered an association, in fact, just as Kilpatrick and his associates formed the Kilpatrick Enterprise. The types of crimes that are being investigated–mail fraud, wire fraud, money laundering–are all crimes listed in the RICO statute as eligible predicate offenses that can constitute a pattern of racketeering activity.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York seems particularly well-situated to investigate a RICO case here. It has a strong history of using RICO with great success. In the 1980s, when the office was led by Rudolph Giuliani, prosecutors used RICO prosecutions to take down organized crime families. SDNY reportedly has entered into an immunity deal with Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg, someone who is well-positioned to provide valuable information to prosecutors about any illegal financial transactions. SDNY has already convicted former Trump Organization attorney Michael Cohen of tax offenses, fraud, false statements and campaign finance violations, the last of which Cohen has said he committed at Trump’s direction. And, although he has fallen short of earning a formal cooperation agreement, Cohen has met with SDNY prosecutors to share information.

The search of Cohen’s home and office reportedly turned up a recording of some of his conversations, including one with Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, who worked as a consultant on the inauguration. The Wall Street Journal has reported that, in the recording, Wolkoff expressed concern about how the inaugural committee was spending the record $107 million it had raised. Richard Gates, who has pleaded guilty in the Mueller probe, has also reportedly met with SDNY prosecutors. The Journal reported that as deputy chairman of the Trump inaugural committee, Gates asked vendors to accept payments directly from donors, a curious request that likely will draw the scrutiny of prosecutors at least in part because entities that bring in and distribute money can be used as vehicles for money laundering, a crime that may constitute a RICO racketeering predicate.

Even if SDNY follows the Justice Department policy that a sitting president cannot be indicted, nothing prohibits the Trump Organization or Trump’s associates from being indicted. In addition, even if a sitting president cannot be indicted, a former president can be. Under the statute of limitations, a RICO conspiracy may be charged up to five years after its last predicate racketeering act is committed. If any predicate act was committed on or after Jan. 20, 2016, the statute of limitations would not preclude an indictment from being filed on Jan. 20, 2021, the moment a president is sworn in, so long as that president is not Donald Trump. ... estigation


In June 2016, former Ohio Rep BOB MCEWEN met in Ukraine w/ Borys Kolesnikov, an oligarch who wired money into PAUL MANAFORT's Cyprus accounts from 2010-2014.

McEwen is a paid director of United in Purpose, a data operation that has multiple data points on 200 million voters! /1


What was McEwen doing in Ukraine in June 2016?

Well, he appears to have joined up w/ Rep Bob Aderholt there for the Ukraine Prayer Breakfast.

McEwen and Aderholt have ties to the Fellowship Foundation, known for sponsoring the National Prayer Breakfast. /2


Just before meeting w/ McEwen & Kolesnikov, Aderholt met w/ Rinat Akhmetov who's "reportedly Ukraine's richest man" and "put millions of dollars in Manafort's pockets."

Plus, "Akhemetov was also the patron of Yanukovych's political efforts, which included hiring Manafort." /3


Aderholt's original itinerary didn't include this visit to Ukraine, but it was later amended to include it, as well as his meeting w/ Akhmetov and the immediately-following meeting with Kolesnikov & McEwen to discuss "the current concerns and issues in the country and region." /4


NOTE: Both Ukrainian oligarchs Aderholt met w/ on 6/1/16 (Akhmetov & Kolesnikov) were named in Rick Gates' testimony as having transferred millions of $'s to Manafort's Cyprus accounts!

And McEwen is known to have attended at least one of the meetings, the one w/ Kolesnikov. /5

Also remember that, in May 2018, "[Ukrainian President Petro] Poroshenko's government had ceased cooperating with the Mueller investigation and suspended its own inquiry into Manafort's activities." /6


As for Kolesnikov--the Ukrainian oligarch McEwen & Aderholt met w/ on 6/1/16--he not only wired $ to Manafort in Cyprus, his assets were frozen by Switzlerland on 2/28/14 "b/c of his role in Yanukovich's government as the Interior Ministry's department for economic security." /7


Also, Kolesnikov is "considered an ally of Rinat Akhmetov" (the Ukrainian oligarch Aderholt met w/ just before meeting w/ Kolesnikov & McEwen), and Kolesnikov & Akhmetov "have been friends from a young age."

So McEwen meeting w/ just one is perhaps not unlike meeting w/ both. /8


It's not like McEwen, a longtime lobbyist, doesn't have a history of supporting unsavory characters. In Dec 2010, he signed a 3-month contract at the rate of $25k per month to assist Ivory Coast's ambassador to the US and was effectively lobbying for strongman Laurent Gbagbo. /9


Gbagbo, who refused to step down after losing the 2010 election, has "been on trial since 2016 in the International Criminal Court accused of carrying out widespread, systemic attacks against civilians and crimes against humanity including murder, rape, and persecution." /10


Let's also not forget that Russian spy Mariia Butina engaged in double-penetration--not just of the NRA, but also of members and organizers of the National Prayer Breakfast, the latter of which McEwen's been involved in since at least 1983. /11


Besides the FBI's affidavit on Butina making reference to USP 1 (Paul Erickson) & USP 2 (Rockefeller heir George O'Neill), it also states she emailed an "organizer" of the prayer breakfast to thank "him" for "the very private meeting that followed," adding she has more info. /12


ArsonCrafts Retweeted ABC News Politics
We also know Butina met with and arranged a meeting between Dana Rohrabacher and her mentor, Alexander Torshin, in 2015.

While Butina isn't the focal point of my thread, it's worth wondering just how prolific and deep her penetration went. Right, Bob? /13ArsonCrafts added,

ABC News Politics
Verified account

NEW: California Rep. Dana Rohrabacher met with alleged Russian agent Maria Butina in 2015, her emails reveal, fueling more questions about his longstanding Kremlin connections, ABC News' @ajdukakis reports …

That said, the focus of my thread is McEwen, his directorship of an org that has data on 200M voters, his meeting in June 2016 w/ a Ukrainian oligarch tied to Manafort, and, as I'll discuss next, McEwen's seemingly close relationship w/ Trump before & after the 2016 election. /14

ArsonCrafts Retweeted ArsonCrafts
As w/ Ralph Reed and his Faith & Freedom Coalition (501c4 w/ data on up to 55M voters, examined in my thread below), I'm very concerned by McEwen's highly-charged partisanship and access to Trump as he leads United in Purpose (501c4 w/ data on 200M). /15ArsonCrafts added,


PART III: Ralph Reed - The Missing Link:

Ralph Reed is the centerpiece of the evangelical "big data" operation that propelled Trump to the White…
Show this thread

My sleuthing discovered that McEwen appears to have personally met Trump on/around both 10/3/16 and 10/7/16.

In his 10/3/16 post, McEwen also mentions another UiP director, David Barton, being present at the meeting with Trump. /16


ArsonCrafts Retweeted ArsonCrafts
David Barton previously had run Ted Cruz's Keep The Promise PAC before Trump's nomination and is also a highly-charged partisan--albeit even more intense--with a theocratic, biblical worldview. /17ArsonCrafts added,

But I found more compelling evidence when I looked into who ran Cruz's "Keep The Promise PAC."

His name is David Barton.

Show this thread

After the election, McEwen and his wife appear to have enjoyed VIP access to Trump, Pence, family, and more. /18


Pic #1 (9/25/17) - Is McEwen sneaking a pic of @realDonaldTrump from inside the White House and posting it publicly on social media? WTF?!

Pic #2 (6/24/17) - Nevermind that @VP is blinking... as long as BOB looks good, it's going on Facebook! /19


Reviewing McEwen's posts is a lot like seeing a "Who's Who" of Trumpalos:

1. Dinesh "Pardon Me" D'souza (Jul 2014)
2. Bibi (Feb 2016... hmmm)
3. Sheriff Clarke (Jul 2016)
4. Nigel Farage (Mar 2017) /18

There are more... these are just the ones who made my top four. /20


Regarding McEwen's highly-charged partisanship, here's McEwen tossing around inflammatory memes on social media like your assh*le uncle.

Oh, but the irony of that last meme, right? ;) /21

What McEwen has to say in his own words isn't really all that nice, either.

But what can I say?

Poor guy his news from Breitbart. /22


Like Ralph Reed, McEwen doesn't seem like a fan of the Mueller investigation, but I'd expect better from a former member of House Intel like McEwen.

Perhaps he's the "Devin Nunes" of former Congressmen. /23


In my final chapter on Bob McEwen, I'd like to point out that he is the "Executive Director" for the Council for National Policy.

In 2016, McEwen was paid $214k by CNP for 40 hrs/wk, which is in addition to the $60k from UiP (voter operation w/ data on 200M) for 8 hrs/wk. /24


@jennycohn1 knows quite a bit about CNP, which is a secretive umbrella org whose members include Pence, the Mercers, Bannon, Kellyanne Conway, the DeVos family, Wayne LaPierre, UiP's Bill Dallas, Faith & Freedom Coalition's Ralph Reed, and Jack Abramoff. /25


So, knowing everything I now know about Bob McEwen and Ralph Reed whose 501c4 orgs boast having data on 200M and 55M, respectively, I'm not comfortable with their extreme partisanship, their access to voter data, and their close, personal ties to Trump.

None of us should be. /26

As Bill Dallas, the President of UiP (under McEwen's directorship) said, “We have about 200 million files, so we have pretty much the whole voting population in our database... What we do is track to see what’s going to make somebody either vote one way, or not vote at all.” /27


Again, final question:

Why in the world was former Ohio Rep Bob McEwen (who has access to voter data on 200M) meeting in June 2016 with Borys Kolesnikov, a Ukrainian oligarch who wired millions of $'s to Manafort's Cyprus accounts? /28x


ArsonCrafts Retweeted ArsonCrafts
Part I:ArsonCrafts added,


The Christian Right had their own "Cambridge Analytica" in the 2016 election, aided by 20,000 pastors.

Show this thread

ArsonCrafts Retweeted ArsonCrafts
Part II: ... 5003678720
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:57 pm

Another 16 days that the foreign company protecting *some* US citizen suspected criminal gets to stall.
So it'll be reviewed on 3/22 and we'll likely find out on 3/25 or 3/26 if SCOTUS will hear the appeal.


Cohen brings yet MORE receipts to Congress -- this time showing the edits trump's lawyers made to his statement before he got charged for making a false statement delivering it.

Cohen gives documents to House panel on Trump attorney alleged changes to 2017 testimony

michael cohen committee testimony trump schneider dnt lead vpx_00000201
(CNN)Michael Cohen on Wednesday provided the House Intelligence Committee with new documents showing edits to the false written statement he delivered to Congress in 2017 about the Trump Organization's pursuit of the Trump Tower Moscow project into the 2016 campaign season, according to multiple sources familiar with the matter.

The documents Cohen provided are intended to further explain his public testimony last week, in which Cohen said that President Donald Trump's then-personal lawyer Jay Sekulow made changes to his statement to the House and Senate Intelligence Committees, and that it was reviewed ahead of time by lawyers like Abbe Lowell, an attorney for Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, the President's daughter and son-in-law who are both White House advisers.

It's unclear what Cohen's documents show was specifically changed in the statement. Cohen is testifying Wednesday behind closed doors at the House Intelligence Committee.

"There were changes made, additions -- Jay Sekulow, for one," Cohen said last week. "There were several changes that were made including how we were going to handle that message, which was -- the message of course being -- the length of time that the Trump Tower Moscow project stayed and remained alive."

Sekulow pushed back on Cohen's allegations in a statement last week, saying that the "testimony by Michael Cohen that attorneys for the President edited or changed his statement to Congress to alter the duration of the Trump Tower Moscow negotiations is completely false."

As CNN previously reported, according to two of the sources familiar with the preparation, including one close to the Trump Organization and one close to the President's legal team, said the lawyers had no indication that any of the information in the testimony of Trump's now-former longtime attorney and fixer was inaccurate.

Cohen also accused Trump in his public testimony of encouraging him to lie about the Trump Tower Moscow discussions, though he said Trump did not tell him to do so directly.

"He doesn't tell you what he wants. What he does is again, 'Michael, there's no Russia, there's no collusion, there's no involvement, there's no interference.' I know what he means because I've been around him for so long," Cohen testified. "That's the message that he wanted to reinforce."

Cohen was supposed to report to prison Wednesday to begin serving a three-year sentence for tax crimes, tax evasion and lying to Congress. Instead, President Donald Trump's former lawyer is on Capitol Hill talking about the crimes he is now accusing Trump of committing.

Cohen, who is now slated to begin his prison term on May 6, is back on Capitol Hill on Wednesday for his fourth appearance in the last eight days, concluding his closed-door testimony before the Intelligence Committee that began last week.
In the first round of testimony last week, Cohen was asked about a range of topics, with lawmakers seeking additional details on the drafting of Cohen's statement as well as any discussions about a possible pardon. The session also included some of the partisan fighting that plagued the committee during its Russia investigation in the last Congress, according to sources familiar with his testimony.

Republicans on the committee objected to what they felt were untoward Democratic tactics in the run-up to the interview, noting that Democratic committee staff met with Cohen several times before the hearing without telling the Republicans, according to the sources. They also asked Cohen about his comments in last week's public hearing that he had discussed "topics" with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff before the hearing, the sources said.

Rep. Mike Turner, an Ohio Republican, sent Cohen's attorney a letter on Thursday asking for details about his contact with Schiff and his committee staff, suggesting the staff may have "coached" Cohen.

Patrick Boland, a spokesman for Schiff, said that the committee was running "a professional investigation in search of the facts, and we welcome the opportunity to meet with potential witnesses in advance of any testimony to determine relevant topics to cover in order to make productive use of their time before the committee."

"Despite this professed outrage by Republicans, it's completely appropriate to conduct proffer sessions and allow witnesses to review their prior testimony before the Committee interviews them — such sessions are a routine part of every serious investigation around the country, including congressional investigations," Boland said.

Consultation with witnesses ahead of a hearing or interview isn't necessarily out of the ordinary. For instance, Cohen's lawyer, Lanny Davis, also spoke to Republicans on the House Oversight Committee ahead of their hearing last week. But the questions about Schiff's consultation from Intelligence Committee Republicans underscores the divisions between the two parties on that panel when it comes to the Russia investigation.

Cohen's final day of Capitol Hill testimony, notably, comes in an even more heated environment than last week, after House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler announced Monday the start of a sweeping investigation into the President. House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings signaled after Cohen's public testimony that he wanted to interview Trump's eldest son Donald Trump Jr. and Trump Organization chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg, among others.
And the House Intelligence Committee has signaled interest in Weisselberg, while Schiff said the committee would hold a public hearing next week with Felix Sater, the Russian-born Trump business associate who worked with Cohen on the Trump Tower Moscow project.

Trump has aggressively pushed back on the House investigations following Cohen's testimony, charging that "the witch hunt continues" and Democrats have effectively "started the campaign."

House Oversight to pursue interviews with Trump family members, close associates
"The witch hunt continues. The fact is that -- I guess we got 81 letters. There was no collusion. It's a hoax," Trump told reporters Tuesday when asked about the investigations.

In his public testimony last week, Cohen accused Trump of directing him to make hush-money payments to women alleging affairs, and then displayed a reimbursement check he was paid with Trump's signature. He also accused Trump of telling him to publicly lie about Trump's knowledge of the payments in February 2018, along with committing financial fraud.
He followed up that public House Oversight appearance with the first part of his closed-door House Intelligence interview the following day, where Schiff said the committee was able to "drill down" certain issues in even more detail.

"We are in communication with, obviously, Mr. Cohen and his counsel about further document requests following our interview today that we'll be able to discuss at our next session," Schiff said after Cohen had finished for the day. "We also went through documents in our possession, dozens of documents in our possession with Mr. Cohen, but we have additional document requests that we will be in discussion with him about."

There are a host of topics that lawmakers are interested in hearing from Cohen about, including his public testimony about overhearing a conversation between Trump and longtime confidante Roger Stone involving a WikiLeaks' email dump, presidential pardons, and Cohen's public testimony that the Southern District of New York could be investigating his conversations with Trump.

The Wall Street Journal reported Monday that Cohen's former lawyer, Stephen Ryan, discussed the possibility of a pardon for Cohen with Trump's attorneys after the FBI's raid on Cohen.
The House Judiciary Committee is also asking questions about pardons, as they asked a number of Trump officials related to possible pardons for Cohen, former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn.

This story has been updated with additional developments Wednesday. ... index.html

In the Middle of His Official Business, Trump Took the Time to Send Checks to Michael Cohen
March 5, 2019
Even after taking office, President Trump continued to write checks to Michael D. Cohen, his former personal lawyer and fixer.Doug Mills/The New York Times

Even after taking office, President Trump continued to write checks to Michael D. Cohen, his former personal lawyer and fixer.Doug Mills/The New York Times
WASHINGTON — On a busy day at the White House, President Trump hosted senators to talk about tax cuts, accused a Democratic congresswoman of distorting his condolence call to a soldier’s widow and suffered another court defeat for his travel ban targeting Muslim countries.

And at some point on Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2017, Mr. Trump took the time to sign a $35,000 check to his lawyer, who had made hush payments to prevent alleged sexual misconduct from being exposed before the 2016 presidential election. It was one of 11 occasions that Mr. Trump or his trust cut such checks, six of which were provided this week to The New York Times.

One of six checks provided to The New York Times. The account number on every check has been redacted.

One of six checks provided to The New York Times. The account number on every check has been redacted.
At the heart of last week’s congressional testimony by Michael D. Cohen, Mr. Trump’s former lawyer, was the sensational accusation that the sitting president of the United States financed an illegal cover-up from inside the White House. The dates on the newly available checks shed light on the parallel lives Mr. Trump was living by this account — at once managing affairs of state while quietly paying the price of keeping his personal secrets out of the public eye.

The president hosted a foreign leader in the Oval Office, then wrote a check. He haggled over legislation, then wrote a check. He traveled abroad, then wrote a check. On the same day he reportedly pressured the F.B.I. director to drop an investigation into a former aide, the president’s trust issued a check to Mr. Cohen in furtherance of what federal prosecutors have called a criminal scheme to violate campaign finance laws at the direction of Mr. Trump.

The White House on Tuesday referred questions about the payments to Mr. Trump’s private lawyers. Jay Sekulow, one of the president’s personal lawyers, had no comment and a lawyer for the Trump Organization declined to discuss the matter.

Other defenders of the president said that the checks proved only that Mr. Trump paid his personal lawyer, not that he necessarily knew the money was meant to reimburse Mr. Cohen for hush payments to Stormy Daniels, the pornographic film actress who has claimed to have had an extramarital affair with Mr. Trump. The president has denied the affair.

“I think it’s news we knew about,” Representative Jim Jordan of Ohio, the ranking Republican on the House Oversight and Reform Committee and one of the president’s staunchest allies, told reporters during a break in last week’s hearing. The payments, he said, could have been for services based on a retainer, although Mr. Cohen said there was no such retainer.

The president’s critics said that the checks, mostly with Mr. Trump’s distinctive up-and-down signature, in fact bolster the prosecutors’ conclusion about his involvement in the scheme. Mr. Cohen has pleaded guilty to violating campaign finance laws as well as lying to Congress and faces three years in prison starting in the spring.

“The $35,000 is an indication of the quality of that evidence, and it both shows the extent of Trump’s leading role and now leaves little doubt that he faces criminal prosecution after he leaves office for the same offenses for which Cohen will serve time,” said Robert F. Bauer, a law professor at New York University and former White House counsel for President Barack Obama.

Indeed, some people close to Mr. Trump have privately predicted that he will ultimately choose to seek a second term in part because of his legal exposure if he is not president. While there is no legal consensus on the matter, Justice Department policy says that a president cannot be indicted while in office.

The checks to Mr. Cohen were sent on a more or less monthly basis throughout 2017, Mr. Trump’s first year in office. Mr. Cohen provided two checks to the House committee last week and his lawyer, Lanny J. Davis, provided the additional six checks to The Times this week. Mr. Cohen’s team said it was searching for three others.

Of the eight checks now available, seven were for $35,000 and another was for $70,000 to cover two months’ worth of payments. Six were signed by Mr. Trump himself while he was president and the other two were signed by his eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., and his company’s chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg.

Altogether, Mr. Trump or his trust paid Mr. Cohen $420,000, according to federal prosecutors. Of that, $130,000 was to reimburse payments made shortly before the 2016 election to Ms. Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, so she would not tell her story. Another $50,000 was for Mr. Cohen’s effort to manipulate online polls to inflate Mr. Trump’s reputation as a businessman.

That $180,000 was then “grossed up” with another $180,000 to offset taxes that Mr. Cohen would have to pay on the original money since it was being treated as income. Another $60,000 was added as a “bonus,” prosecutors have said.

Mr. Trump has offered conflicting accounts about the matter. Speaking to reporters on Air Force One in April 2018, he said he did not know about the payment to Ms. Daniels. But a month later, his lawyer, Rudolph W. Giuliani, hoping to refute the suggestion that it might be a campaign finance violation, told Fox News and The Times that the president had in fact reimbursed Mr. Cohen for the payment.

Citing Mr. Cohen and other evidence, prosecutors from the Southern District of New York said in court papers that Mr. Trump directed the scheme, essentially making him an unindicted co-conspirator.

“We’re talking about a felony committed by the president of the United States where there’s no dispute,” said Mr. Davis, the lawyer for Mr. Cohen.

People close to Mr. Trump have suggested that he may not have been aware of what Mr. Cohen was doing in real time, despite an audiotape that Mr. Cohen recorded of him discussing with Mr. Trump payments that The National Enquirer had made to a second woman who claimed to have had an affair with the candidate.

A person close to Mr. Trump said that he may have believed the checks were payment for general legal fees, but may not have known why. The president’s associates stressed that the payment to Mr. Cohen was one of several he made privately each month.

Mr. Davis scoffed at that. “You denied the Stormy Daniels affair and that was a lie,” he said. “Now you’re denying that you knew about this payoff and reimbursement that Giuliani says you knew about. So your claim of ignorance doesn’t have any credibility.”

One person who without question was involved, according to multiple people briefed on the events, was Mr. Weisselberg, the Trump Organization chief financial officer. Mr. Cohen told Mr. Weisselberg about the $130,000 wire transfer to Ms. Daniels. Mr. Weisselberg suggested repaying it in installments and told Mr. Cohen to send invoices once a month, according to the people.

By Mr. Cohen’s account, the checks began in February 2017, just weeks after Mr. Trump was inaugurated as president. When Mr. Cohen visited the Oval Office for the first time, he said, Mr. Trump raised the issue of the hush payments in the same room that symbolized the United States’ seat of power.

“Don’t worry, Michael, your January and February reimbursement checks are coming,” he quoted Mr. Trump telling him. “They were FedExed from New York and it takes a while for that to get through the White House system.”

The first check was signed Feb. 14, 2017, for $70,000 to cover both January and February. It was issued by the president’s trust and signed by Mr. Weisselberg and Donald Trump Jr.

The payment came at a fraught moment in the president’s early weeks, just a day after he forced his national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn, to resign for lying about his contacts with Russia. On the same day the check to Mr. Cohen was signed, Mr. Trump pulled aside James B. Comey, then the F.B.I. director, and suggested “letting Flynn go,” according to a contemporaneous memo by Mr. Comey.

The next check, for $35,000, came from the trust on March 17, even as the president hosted Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany in the Oval Office and aides were grappling with a firestorm over unfounded assertions aired by the White House that the British had spied on Mr. Trump when he was a candidate.

Mr. Cohen included this check in a series of documents he provided to Congress last week to support his testimony.
Mr. Cohen included this check in a series of documents he provided to Congress last week to support his testimony.
A check for April has not been located; Mr. Cohen’s records were seized by federal agents. But after the initial payments, Mr. Trump was instructed that he should write Mr. Cohen checks from his personal checking account instead of the trust. It is not clear why he was told this, but in so doing, he removed his son’s name from future checks.

On May 23, the president signed a personal check on the same day he was overseas meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel in Jerusalem and President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority in Bethlehem, before flying that night to Rome.

Checks for June and July have also not been located. The next one, on Aug. 1, came as Mr. Trump invited small business owners to the White House and an aide confirmed that the president had dictated a misleading statement about a 2016 meeting that his campaign team held with Russians.

Another check included as part of Mr. Cohen’s testimony last week to Congress.
Another check included as part of Mr. Cohen’s testimony last week to Congress.
On Sept. 12, Mr. Trump hosted the prime minister of Malaysia even as his press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, was telling reporters that the Justice Department should “certainly look at” prosecuting Mr. Comey. Mr. Trump signed another $35,000 check that day.

After the Oct. 18 check came one on Nov. 21, just two days before Thanksgiving when Mr. Trump pardoned a turkey, saying, “I feel so good about myself,” and then defended Roy S. Moore, the Republican Senate candidate in Alabama who had been accused of sexual misconduct with teenage girls. Mr. Trump also spoke by telephone that day with President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia.

The last check made public was signed on Dec. 5, the same day that Mr. Trump called Mr. Netanyahu, Mr. Abbas and Arab leaders to tell them that he had decided to move the American Embassy to Jerusalem.

Four months later, F.B.I. agents raided Mr. Cohen’s office and home. ... hecks.html

Sarah Kendzior

New episode of @gaslitnation is out! We discuss the Cohen testimony, the national security threat of Jared and Ivanka, Trump's love fest with Kim Jong Un, and more!

Mar 6 at 11:09am
Rotting Monuments

Welcome back to Gaslit Nation where we keep getting older but the political shitshow stays the same age! This week we discuss the quasi-revelations from Michael Cohen’s testimony and debunk the absurd argument that Trump did not want to win the presidency but merely wanted to make money off a Trump Tower Moscow. Like Trump Tower Moscow, which was supposed to be the tallest building in Europe with a penthouse for mass-murderer Putin and an Ivanka Trump branded spa, the White House was another monument for Trump, in a long list of monuments he's built for himself over the years, and one that would help him and his family continue to live above the law.

We discuss once again the grave national security threat of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump continuing their White House reign despite their many corrupt business practices, their security clearance lies and abuse of classified information, and their close relationship with vicious leaders like MBS.

Speaking of murderous millennials, we break down Trump’s meet-up with his beloved Kim Jong Un, his abusive behavior to the family of North Korean regime victim Otto Warmbier, and discuss what it’s like living under a president who values neither loyalty to country nor the sanctity of human life. If you would like Gaslit Nation to take on new topics, contact your representatives and push for impeachment hearings today!

Trump wrote hush money check to Cohen the same day he cornered Comey

The New York Times presents the literal checks

Matthew Rozsa
A new report confirms that at least six checks were cut by President Donald Trump to his then-lawyer Michael Cohen in order to cover up his alleged extramarital affairs.

Trump is reported to have cut 11 checks to Cohen in order to facilitate the covering up of his affairs, according to The New York Times.

One check for $35,000 was cut on Oct. 18, 2017, the same day that Trump accused Rep. Frederica Wilson of lying about his phone call to the widow of Sergeant La David Johnson, met with senators to promote his tax cut bill and lost a major legal battle over his Muslim immigration ban.

Another check was cut on the same day that he allegedly met with former FBI Director James Comey and urged him to drop his investigation into Trump's former national security adviser, Michael Flynn.

Trump also cut checks after meeting with a foreign leader, discussing legislation and traveling overseas.

The Times also reports that the eight checks currently available amounted to $420,000 — seven checks for $35,000 and then an additional check for two months' worth of payments for $70,000. Trump signed six of them while the other two were signed by the Trump Organization's chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, and by his eldest son Donald Trump Jr. Federal prosecutors allege that $130,000 from that amount was used to reimburse Cohen for paying hush money to former porn star Stormy Daniels, who Trump allegedly slept with, while another $50,000 was spent on Cohen manipulating online polls on Trump's behalf and $180,000 was "grossed up" to offset taxes that Cohen would have to pay on the original $180,000 (for the Daniels hush money and the polls). A final $60,000 payment was added as a bonus, according to prosecutors.

"The $35,000 is an indication of the quality of that evidence, and it both shows the extent of Trump’s leading role and now leaves little doubt that he faces criminal prosecution after he leaves office for the same offenses for which Cohen will serve time," Robert F. Bauer, a law professor at New York University and former White House counsel for President Barack Obama, told The New York Times. Trump would most likely not have to worry about criminal consequences while in office because the consensus view is that a sitting president cannot be indicted.

It is still unclear how much Cohen knows regarding Trump's alleged crimes and what proof he has to substantiate accusations that he might make. In July, Cohen claimed that he had tapes in which the president discussed breaking the law, which like the checks could be damning to the president if they both exist and come to light.

"I've made my position very, very clear that Lanny Davis and Michael Cohen need to stop screwing around and release any and all tapes right now. Period," Michael Avenatti, Daniels' lawyer, told Salon at the time.

Matthew Rozsa is a breaking news writer for Salon. He holds an MA in History from Rutgers University-Newark and is ABD in his PhD program in History at Lehigh University. His work has appeared in Mic, Quartz and MSNBC. ... red-comey/

Cohen AND his lawyers are wheeling in suitcases for his appearance today before House Intel! I bet they are all marked and indexed and ready for everyone to get down to business.

Investigators looking into lawyers’ contacts with Cohen after FBI raids

PHOTO: Michael Cohen, former attorney and fixer for President Donald Trump, arrives before testifying to the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., Feb. 26, 2019.Mark Wilson/Getty Images, FILE
Michael Cohen, former attorney and fixer for President Donald Trump, arrives before testifying to the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., Feb. 26, 2019.more +
In the weeks following the federal raids on former Michael Cohen’s law office and residences last April, President Donald Trump's former lawyer and confidant was contacted by two New York attorneys who claimed to be in close contact with Rudy Giuliani, the current personal attorney to Trump, according to sources with direct knowledge of the discussions.

The outreach came just as Cohen, who spent more than a decade advocating for Trump, was wrangling with the most consequential decision of his life; whether to remain in a joint defense agreement with the president and others, or to flip on the man to whom he had pledged immutable loyalty. The sources described the lawyers’ contact with Cohen as an effort to keep him in the tent.

Cohen generated a bounty of bold-faced headlines during his public testimony before Congress last week. He called the occupant of the Oval Office a racist, a con-man and a cheat and accused the president of TEXTcommitting at least one crime while in office.

MORE: EXCLUSIVE: Michael Cohen says family and country, not President Trump, is his 'first loyalty'
Yet for all the attention paid to what Cohen was willing to say about the president, his reluctance to answer a question about the last communications he had with Trump or someone acting on his behalf made news on its own. Cohen clammed up and claimed that federal prosecutors were actively probing that very issue.

“Unfortunately, this topic is something that’s being investigated right now by the Southern District of New York, and I’ve been asked by them not to discuss and not to talk about these issues,” Cohen said.

The sources familiar with the contacts said the two lawyers first reached out to Cohen late in April of last year and that the discussions continued for about two months. The attorneys, who have no known formal ties to the White House, urged Cohen not to leave the joint defense agreement, the sources told ABC News, and also offered a Plan B. In the event Cohen opted to exit the agreement, they could join his legal team and act as a conduit between Cohen and the president’s lawyers.

At one point in the discussions, one of the attorneys sent Cohen a phone screenshot to prove they were in touch with Giuliani, the sources said.

During the time of the conversations, Cohen and attorneys for the president and the Trump Organization were engaged in a cooperative, court-supervised effort to examine millions of files seized from the Cohen raids looking for items potentially covered by attorney-client privilege.

MORE: Ex-Trump lawyer Michael Cohen says Trump knew it was wrong to make hush-money payments during campaign
With that process ongoing, the New York attorneys talked up to Cohen the value of working with them because of their good relationship with Giuliani.

Reached Wednesday by ABC News, Giuliani declined to comment, citing attorney-client privilege.

“I can’t say anything about it. If I had any conversations with any of his lawyers it would be privileged because it was all under the joint defense agreement,” Giuliani said.

The nature and the propriety of the contacts were a subject of interest when Cohen spoke last year to prosecutors in the office of Special Counsel Robert Mueller and, more recently, in the Southern District of New York, according to people familiar with the events.

Investigators have been looking into whether these communications were intended to influence Cohen, a potential witness against the president, or to implicitly dangle a potential pardon in front of Cohen, the sources said. It’s unclear if prosecutors regard the contacts as illegal or improper.

A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of New York declined to comment.

Neither Cohen nor his attorneys responded to requests for comment.

The sources tell ABC News that during the multiple conversations between Cohen and the attorneys, there was no explicit discussion or offer of a presidential pardon for Cohen. But the sources said there was an implicit message that if Cohen hired these lawyers, it could preserve or increase his chances of a pardon down the road, the sources said.

While emphasizing that he was speaking generally, and not in response to any specific allegation, Giuliani told ABC News that any lawyer that has raised to him the issue of a possible pardon has been told the same thing.

“It has always been squelched immediately,” Giuliani said.

“We have unequivocally always said only one thing, and anything else would be entirely false. We have said the president is not going to issue any pardons and is not considering any pardons at this time,” he added.

MORE: Michael Cohen returns to Capitol Hill as Democratic probes into President Trump intensify
Cohen eventually left the joint defense agreement and hired Guy Petrillo, a white-collar defense lawyer in New York, to represent him as he sought to cooperate with Mueller’s probe and other federal and state investigations. The news of Petrillo’s hiring was first reported last June, but it had been rumored for weeks before that.

According to the sources, the attorneys cautioned Cohen that hiring Petrillo, the former head of the criminal division of the Southern District of New York, could effectively end all contact between Cohen and Trump’s legal team. They noted that Petrillo had previously worked with prominent Trump critics, including former FBI Director James Comey and Preet Bharara, the former US Attorney in Manhattan, who had been fired by the president.

As it became clear that Cohen would commit to Petrillo, the attorneys asked Cohen to consider bringing them on board as well, because their purported relationship with Giuliani could serve to keep lines of communication open with President Trump’s legal team. Petrillo apparently opposed the idea of working in tandem, and Cohen ultimately rejected it, the sources said. The two attorneys never formally joined Cohen’s legal team but sent Cohen a bill for legal services, which he did not pay, the sources said.

The charges include fees for at least a half a dozen phone calls between the attorneys and Giuliani, according to two sources who have seen the invoice. One of the final entries is for a late June in-person meeting in New York between at least one of the attorneys and Giuliani. ABC News has not independently reviewed the bill.

The Southern District of New York prosecutors are now in possession of the legal bill along with logs of numerous calls and copies of emails between the attorneys and Cohen, the sources said. During a meeting with Cohen earlier this year, federal prosecutors in New York expressed interest in learning who paid the bill. Cohen said he did not know who, if anyone, did.

Cohen is back in Washington, D.C. again on Wednesday for another private session with the House Intelligence Committee, after spending a full-day with the committee last week. In addition to his marathon public testimony, Cohen spent in total more than a dozen hours behind closed doors last week with the intelligence committees of both chambers of Congress.

In August Cohen pleaded guilty to eight felonies, including tax and bank fraud unrelated to his work for Trump and to two campaign finance violations for his role in hush money deals with two women who had claimed past affairs with Trump. He told a federal judge that he had arranged the deals with the women in coordination with and at the direction of then-candidate Trump.

President Trump has denied the allegations of the affairs and has insisted that he never asked or directed Cohen to do anything illegal.

Cohen entered a separate guilty plea in November with the special counsel’s office for false statements to Congress in 2017 about the timing and details of a proposed Trump Tower project in Moscow.

He was sentenced to three years in prison and must begin serving his time no later than May 6.

The president has repeatedly criticized his former ally, often in starkly personal terms. In a Sunday tweet, President Trump dismissed Cohen’s congressional appearance as “hostile..testimony given by a liar to reduce his prison time.” ... d=61514204
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:39 pm


March 7, 2019/45 Comments/in 2016 Presidential Election, Financial Fraud, Mueller Probe /by empty wheel

In the last several days, two outlets have tried — but (in my opinion) failed — to communicate the sheer scale of the President’s corruption. Today, that bastion of warmed over conventional wisdom, Axios, deemed Trump’s Russian conspiracy “the biggest political scandal in American history.”


They miss most of the key details (and treat Trump’s contacts with Russian officials as the crime, when that’s not by itself one). Even in a piece invoking the Teapot Dome Scandal, they don’t seem to see the outlines of a quid pro quo bribe, Tower and dirt for sanctions relief. There’s no mention of Paul Manafort at all, much less one describing how he shared polling data in a meeting where he also discussed sanctions relief.

And I don’t think the Mueller investigation really has delivered one of the biggest counterintelligence cases in history (which may be a mis-citation of this Garrett Graff article).

More remarkably, the Axios founders don’t seem to be able to get their arms around where this scandal ends, in part because some of the other stuff Trump has done — monetizing the Presidency via other foreign powers or various properties — are separate from the Russian part of Trump’s scandals.

Tuesday, Greg Sargent attempted a different approach, cataloging all the things that Republicans in Congress think should not be investigated by Congress. He came up with this list:

Materials relating to any foreign government payments to Trump’s businesses, which might constitute violations of the Constitution’s emoluments clause.

Materials that might shed light on Trump’s negotiations over the duration of a real estate project in Moscow, which Trump concealed from the voters even as the GOP primaries were underway.

Materials that might show whether Trump’s lawyers had a hand in rewriting former lawyer Michael Cohen’s testimony to Congress falsifying the timeline of those negotiations.

Materials that might illuminate more detail about Trump’s numerous efforts to obstruct the FBI/Mueller investigation.
Materials that would shed more light on the criminal hush-money scheme that Cohen carried out, allegedly at Trump’s direction, and on Trump’s reimbursement of those payments.

This list is based on the HJC list of document requests, and so is limited to people who’ve already (publicly) been asked for documents. But even there, it doesn’t capture why some of these things matter — again, including the appearance of a quid quo pro bribe trading the Trump Tower for sanctions relief. Nor does it incorporate the full scope of kinds of crimes listed here. This list doesn’t include the range of lies told, not just by Cohen but by Roger Stone and Don Jr and others, nor does it consider the import of Cambridge Analytica and Manafort sharing polling data with the Russians.

And, of course, because Sargent works backwards from the HJC list, he doesn’t include issues already being investigated by other committees, such as how Trump’s ICE keeps losing immigrant children, or why he forced aides to give his daughter and her husband security clearances that they clearly weren’t suited for.

I raise this not to criticize, but instead to observe that we’re at a point where journalists are struggling to communicate the full scale of Trump’s corruption, even just that corruption tied exclusively to the Russian investigation. That’s partly been a result of his media approach, treating each day as a new opportunity to replace yesterday’s spectacle with a new one. It’s partly because of the boiling frog effect: we’ve had piecemeal disclosures over two years, and few journalists have taken stock along the way to see what the actual court evidentiary record amounts to. And even there, we often forget to add in the truly breathtaking corruption of Administration aides like Scott Pruitt or Ryan Zinke, or of current Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot of late — I don’t pretend to be able to get my brain around anything beyond the Russian investigation, to the extent even that is doable. It seems that we need to start trying to quantify this not in terms of names or actions but instead in terms of harm to the nation.

Just as one example, even the judges in the Russian investigation have — across the board — seen Trump’s flunkies to be selling out the interest of the United States, perhaps for Trump personally, perhaps for self-dealing, perhaps for foreign associates. Whatever crimes (or not) Trump committed, because he and his flunkies refuse to put the interest of the country first, it has consequences for Americans, including the constituents of members of Congress who want to ignore all this corruption.

We’ve been boiling frogs for several years here. But it’s time to take stock on the bottom line effect that Trump’s corruption has had on the country, and holding Republican enablers accountable for that damage. ... p-scandal/

The biggest political scandal in American history

Jim VandeHei, Mike Allen7 hours ago

Even without seeing Robert Mueller's report, or knowing what prosecutors with the Southern District of New York have unearthed, or what congressional investigators will find, we already have witnessed the biggest political scandal in American history.

Historians tell Axios that the only two scandals that come close to Trump-Russia are Watergate, which led to President Richard Nixon's resignation in 1974, and the Teapot Dome scandal of the early 1920s, in which oil barons bribed a corrupt aide to President Warren Harding for petroleum leases.

Mueller has already delivered one of the biggest counterintelligence cases in U.S. history, author Garrett Graff points out — up there with Aldrich Ames (a former CIA officer convicted in 1994 of being a KGB double agent), or Julius and Ethel Rosenberg (executed in 1953 for spying for the Soviets).

Watergate yielded more charges than Mueller has so far: A total of 69 people were charged in Watergate; 48 people and 20 corporations pleaded guilty. Mueller so far has indicted 27 people; seven have been convicted or pleaded guilty.
But historians say that both Watergate and Teapot Dome were more limited because a foreign power wasn't a central player, and a much narrower band of potential offenses was under investigation.

A fourth notable scandal, the Iran-Contra affair of the mid-1980s — in which arms were traded for hostages held by Iran, with the money used to fund rebels in Nicaragua — also involved a more limited range of issues.
The "biggest" realization might strike Trump supporters as overblown or plain wrong. But consider what we already know about actions of Trump and his associates:

Scandal 1: Trump secretly paid hush money to two mistresses on the eve of his presidential victory, and lied about it. His longtime personal lawyer is going to prison after carrying out the scheme on his behalf.

The historical parallel: Bill Clinton was impeached (but acquitted by the Senate) for lying under oath about an affair with a White House intern.

Clinton impeachment Article 3, passed by the House, was obstruction of justice.
Earlier presidents, or their friends, had also been known to pay off mistresses.

Scandal 2: During the presidential campaign, Trump confidantes continued negotiating for a tower in Moscow, potentially one of Trump's most lucrative deals ever. He hid this from the public and lied about it. His lawyer is going to prison for making false statements to Congress about the deal.

The historical parallel: None.
Scandal 3: Russian officials had more than 100 contacts with Trump associates during the campaign and transition, including his son, his closest adviser, his lawyer, and his campaign manager. The Russians offered assistance in undermining Hillary Clinton. The FBI and other government authorities weren't alerted about this effort to subvert our election.

The historical parallel: None.
Scandal 4: Michael Flynn was national security adviser at the same time U.S. intelligence officials believed he was compromised by the Kremlin. He pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his Russian contacts.

The historical parallel: None.
Scandal 5: Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, and told NBC's Lester Holt it was at least in part because of the Russia investigation: "[T]his Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story."

The historical parallel: In the "Saturday Night Massacre" of 1973, Nixon tried to stop the Watergate investigation by abolishing the office of Watergate prosecutor Archibald Cox; and accepting the resignation of Attorney General Elliot Richardson, and firing Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus, when they refused to fire Cox.
Scandal 6: Trump overruled the advice of his lawyers and intelligence experts, and granted his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, a top-secret clearance. This so alarmed his White House chief of staff John Kelly that he recorded his opposition in a memo. Trump and his family repeatedly denied he had interfered.

The historical parallel: None.
The big picture: Presidential historian Jon Meacham tells us that this "transcends scandal — it’s a national crisis in the sense of a period of elevated stakes, high passions, and possibly permanent consequences."

"We’re in the midst of making history more than we are reflecting it."
Be smart: Trump himself might survive all of this — and even more. Republican voters seem basically unmoved by the mounting evidence. ... 6bc44.html

Schiff introduces bill targeting Trump pardons

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) on Thursday re-introduced legislation that would alert Congress if President Trump pardons an individual connected to an investigation in which he or a family member is involved.

Schiff, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, presented the Abuse of the Pardon Prevention Act in an effort to prevent Trump and future presidents from abusing their pardon authority. While Schiff introduced the legislation last year, his new push comes amid reports that representatives for Trump's personal attorney, Michael Cohen, may have spoken about a pardon with attorneys for the president.

"The President has a broad power to confer pardons, but not when they are designed to insulate himself, his family and his associates from criminal investigation," Schiff said in a statement. "Such an abuse of the pardon power would amount to obstruction of justice and is not countenanced by the constitution."

If passed, the law would allow Congress to view evidence against an individual who receives a pardon from the president.

Lanny Davis, who currently represents Cohen, told The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday that Cohen directed his then-attorney last summer “to explore possibilities of a pardon at one point with Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani as well as other lawyers advising President Trump.”

The Journal had previously reported that Cohen's former lawyer raised the possibility of a pardon with Giuliani and other Trump attorneys after an April FBI raid of Cohen's home and office.

Cohen testified last week that Trump is a "conman" and a "cheat," and alleged the president engaged in potentially criminal activity. He further testified that he "never asked for, nor would I accept, a pardon from Mr. Trump."

Schiff and other lawmakers critical of the president have long warned Trump against issuing pardons for those caught up in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation or other criminal probes, such as former campaign chairman Paul Manafort or former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Rudy Giuliani, an attorney for Trump, has previously said the president is unlikely to issue pardons during ongoing investigations. ... mp-pardons

Michael Cohen Sues the Trump Organization for Not Paying His Legal Fees

Michael Cohen, former attorney and fixer for President Donald Trump, arrives at the secure offices of the House Intelligence Committee in the basement of the House Visitors Center at the U.S. Capitol March 06, 2019 in Washington, DC. Cohen is suing the Trump Organization, saying the company stopped paying his legal fees in June 2018 and breached a contract to repay him for litigation expenses.
Chip Somodevilla—Getty Images
(Bloomberg) — Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former lawyer and fixer, sued the Trump Organization on Thursday, saying the company stopped paying his legal fees in June 2018 and breached a contract to repay him for litigation expenses.

The suit was filed Thursday and is likely to prolong the bitter feud between the two men as Cohen heads to prison in May. Cohen, who has pleaded guilty to multiple crimes, just wrapped up a series of appearances before Congress, where he impugned his former boss as a “racist,” “con man” and “cheat.”

“The Trump Organization agreed to indemnify Mr. Cohen and to pay attorneys’ fees and costs incurred by Mr. Cohen in connection with various matters arising from Mr. Cohen’s work with and on behalf of the Organization,” according to the complaint in state court in Manhattan. “These matters included multiple congressional hearings, Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation, and others.” ... anization/


March 7, 2019/5 Comments/in 2016 Presidential Election, Mueller Probe /by empty wheel

Michael Cohen is suing Trump Organization for refusing to fulfill an indemnity agreement they had. By itself, the suit offers the promise that these shitholes will rip each other apart in court. Discovery could be awesome, especially since the suit names Eric and Don Jr.

It also may lead other members of the Joint Defense Agreement to question how long Trump will remain loyal to them.

But I’m acutely interested in the timeline the lawsuit draws out for what it says about Trump’s efforts to cover-up his own criminal actions, laid out below. The italicized entries are ones I’ve added to Cohen’s own timeline — many of those dates come from this post on the timeline of the Special Master review of materials seized in the raid of Cohen’s home. The underlined ones are ones in Cohen’s complaint that I’ve editorialized on, to note where someone is known to have told a lie that coordinated with Cohen’s own lies.

As you can see, Trump’s spawn were happy to pay Cohen’s legal bills so long as he continued to tell the agreed upon lies.

But that changed when he got raided in April 2018. As I’ve noted, even though Cohen and Trump succeeded in getting a Special Master appointed to review all the discovery, that appointment didn’t succeed in withholding any of the most damning materials. But the Special Master process did give Trump an opportunity to review what Cohen had — including to identify what he had tape recordings of.

This probably led them to two conclusions. First, because Cohen had taped incriminating conversations (to ensure he’d get paid, Cohen explained in his OGR testimony), he had exposed Trump where he otherwise wouldn’t have been exposed. But because he hadn’t taped the most damning conversations — those implicating the Trump Tower Moscow deal and other Russia-related issues — they could fuck him over with relative impunity.

And that’s about when Trump stopped paying for Cohen’s silence. Notably, Cohen’s filing states that “On June 2018, Mr. Cohen began telling friends and family that he was willing to cooperate with the Special Counsel,” as if there once was a date there. He doesn’t give us that date.

But we can see from the timeline that it happened at a key point in the Special Master review, which is the same time Trump stopped paying for Cohen’s silence.

Two things are unclear to me.

First, as the title suggests, which came first, Cohen’s willingness to cooperate, or Trump’s newfound unwillingness to pay. My bet is it’s the latter, and my bet is it was a response to what they were seeing in the Special Master review. That is, once they decided that Cohen couldn’t hurt them, they cut him free, to sink on his own.

I’m also curious about why Cohen included Papadopoulos, Manafort, Gates, Page, Sessions, and Flynn in his timeline. He is not known to have testimony relating to any of these people — except, perhaps, Manafort. And they weren’t the only ones in Trump’s JDA (Gates has said he was never in the JDA) to have testified in this period (for example, KT McFarland had her first interview).

But it suggests Cohen may have more on the JDA he’s hanging over the others. Which may get litigated in this suit.

August 2016: Karen McDougal catch and kill.

October 2016: Stormy Daniels hush payment.

January 13, 2017: SSCI opens Russian investigation.

January 25, 2017: HPSCI opens investigation.

January and February 2017: Cohen seeks reimbursement for hush payment to Daniels.

March 2017: Cohen named RNC Deputy Chair.

May 17, 2017: Mueller appointed.

~May 18, 2017: Cohen meets with Trump and Jay Sekulow, implicitly agree to tell a cover story.

End of May 2017: Cohen lawyers up with McDermott Will & Emery.

May 31, 2017: HPSCI subpoenas Cohen.

July 2017: Trump Organization enters into indemnity agreement in context of joint defense agreement.

August 28, 2017, Cohen sends letter making false statements to HPSCI and SSCI.

September 7, 2017: Don Jr testifies before SJC, repeating Cohen’s false statement on Trump Tower Moscow.

September 19, 2017: Cohen lies to SSCI about Trump Tower Moscow.

September 26, 2017: Roger Stone lies to HPSCI about relaying information about WikiLeaks to campaign, including Trump.

October 5, 2017: George Papadopoulos pleads guilty to making false statements to FBI agents relating to contacts he had with agents of the Russian government while working for the Trump Campaign.

October 25, 2017: Cohen testifies to SSCI, lying about Trump Tower Moscow.

October 25, 2017: First payment, in sum of $137,460, to McDermott.

October 30, 2017: Paul Manafort and Rick Gates indicted by a federal grand jury, including conspiracy against
the United States

November 2, 2017: Carter Page testifies before HPSCI.

November 14, 2017: AG Jeff Sessions testifies before HJC.

December 1, 2017: Mike Flynn pled guilty to lying to the FBI about conversations he had with the Russian ambassador.

December 6, 2017: Don Jr testified before the HPSCI, sustaining Cohen’s lies about Trump Tower Moscow.

December 2017: Don Jr and Eric Trump confirm they will continue to pay Cohen’s attorneys’ fees and expenses.

March 6, 2018: Daniels files a lawsuit against Trump and Cohen in CA seeking to invalidate NDA.

March 26, 2018: Daniels amends lawsuit to allege that Cohen defamed Daniels through public statements he made in or around February 2018.

~March 20, 2018: McDougal files a lawsuit against AMI seeking to invalidate the NDA.

April 5, 2018: Trump says, of payment to Daniels, “You’ll have to ask Michael Cohen. Michael is my attorney. You’ll have to ask Michael.”

April 9, 2018: Cohen raided.

April 9, 2018: Trump states, “So, I just heard that they[, the FBI,] broke into the office of one of my personal attorneys, a good man, and it’s a disgraceful situation. It’s a total witch hunt. I’ve been saying it for a long time. . . . It’s an attack on our country in a true sense. It’s an attack on what we all stand for.”

April 13, 2018: Challenge to seized materials, leading to appointment of Special Master.

April 21, 2018: Trump tweets, “The New York Times and a third rate reporter named Maggie Haberman, known as a Crooked H flunkie who I don’t speak to and have nothing to do with, are going out of their way to destroy Michael Cohen and his relationship with me in the hope that he will ‘flip.’ They use . . . non-existent ‘sources’ and a drunk/drugged up loser who hates Michael, a fine person with a wonderful family. Michael is a businessman for his own account/lawyer who I have always liked & respected. Most people will flip if the Government lets them out of trouble, even if . . . it means lying or making up stories. Sorry, I don’t see Michael doing that despite the horrible Witch Hunt and the dishonest media!”

April 26, 2018: On Fox & Friends Trump states that Mr. Cohen is a “good person” and “great guy” who handled “a percentage of my overall legal work. . . . He represents me – like with this crazy Stormy Daniels deal he represented me. And, you know, from what I see he did absolutely nothing wrong. . . . I hope he’s in great shape.”

April 27, 2018: Kimba Wood appoints Barbara Jones as Special Master.

Through May 2018: Trump Organization continues to pay Cohen’s legal fees, totaling $1.7 million.

May 6, 2018: George Stephanopoulos asks Rudy Giuliani, “Are you concerned at all that Michael Cohen’s going to cooperate with prosecutors?” Mr. Giuliani responds, “No. I expect that he is going to cooperate with them. I don’t think they’ll be happy with it because he doesn’t have any incriminating evidence about the president or himself. The man is an honest, honorable lawyer.”

June 4, 2018: Jones issues first report (covering a number of Cohen’s recordings), disagreeing with three claims of privilege.

June 6, 2018: Trump lawyer Joanna Herndon requests that any challenge to Special Master decision be sealed.

June 7, 2018: SDNY demands that any legal discussions of challenges be public.

June 8, 2018: Judge Wood agrees with SDNY, leading Trump to withdraw certain privilege claims.

June XX 2018: Cohen begins telling friends and family that he was willing to cooperate with the Special Counsel and federal prosecutors in connection with the SDNY Investigation.

June 2018: Trump Organization ceases to pay McDermott’s invoices, without notice or justification.

June 13, 2018: Daniels files a new lawsuit in CA against former attorney, Keith Davidson, and Cohen, alleging that they “colluded” and “acted in concert” to “manipulate” Daniels and benefit Trump.

June 14, 2018: NYAG subpoenas Cohen in Charitable Foundation suit.

June 15, 2018; Trump says, “I haven’t spoken to Michael in a long time. . . . [H]e’s not my lawyer anymore.”

June 22, 2018: Judge Wood finds that Cohen didn’t do much privileged lawyering.

July 2, 2018: Jones begins releasing files to SDNY.

July 2, 2018: Cohen tells Stephanopoulos, “To be crystal clear, my wife, my daughter and my son, and this country have my first loyalty … I will not be a punching bag as part of anyone’s defense strategy. I am not a villain of this story, and I will not allow others to try to depict me that way.”

July 23, 2018: Cohen withdraws privilege claims from 12 recordings.

July 26, 2018: On CNN Rudy claims of Cohen, “He has lied all his life” and that he is a “pathological liar.”

August 7, 2018: Cohen begins meeting with Mueller.

August 21, 2018: Cohen pleads guilty in SDNY.

November 29, 2018: Cohen pleads guilty with Mueller.

December 12, 2018: Cohen sentenced.

December 16, 2018: Trump tweets, “Remember, Michael Cohen only became a ‘Rat’ after the FBI did something which was absolutely unthinkable & unheard of until the Witch Hunt was illegally started. They BROKE INTO AN ATTORNEY’S OFFICE!”

January 25, 2019: Cohen asks for reimbursement for $1.9 million in legal fees and $1.9 in restitution. ... n-curious/

Judge Skeptical Of Mueller Withholding Discovery From Russian Troll Company

By Tierney Sneed
March 7, 2019 12:20 pm

WASHINGTON –A federal judge signaled Thursday that she wanted to loosen the protective order keeping the attorneys for a Russian troll company accused of election meddling from sharing discovery with their client.

The fight over who has access to discovery has percolated for months in the case special counsel Robert Mueller brought against Concord Management, which was indicted in February 2017 along with other Russian organizations and individuals who allegedly facilitated the Russian social media trolling in the 2016 election.

At a hearing Thursday, U.S. District Judge Dabney Friedrich revisited the protective order she had previously imposed in the case, which barred Concord Management from sharing discovery with people not on its American legal team without the court’s approval.

Of particular concern to the government, in seeking the order last year, was the alleged national security risks with sharing the discovery with Concord Management’s executive Yevgeny Prigozhin, a Kremlin ally known as “Putin’s chef.” Prigozhin was also named a defendant in February’s indictment, but has not shown up himself in court to fight the charges.

Friedrich said Thursday that she wanted to “explore” with the government “whether the protective order could be narrowed.”

She grilled the prosecutors — led by Jonathan Kravis, an attorney in the DC U.S. Attorney’s office — on how many documents had been deemed sensitive and thus covered by the order. Of the 4 million documents, 3.2 million have been designated as sensitive. A total of 500 documents — including sensitive and non-sensitive materials — prosecutors had identified to the defense counsel as being key documents.

Friedrich said that she had expected that, over time, the government would have narrowed the amount of documents it considered sensitive.

Kravis explained that on a document-by-document level, or even by a category level, the content of the material itself may not necessarily be sensitive, and that it could be possible that a Concord employee would be allowed to view it under certain conditions.

However, he stressed that a major concern was turning over a whole mass of documents, such as everything that was returned from a search warrant, because doing so could reveal “investigative methods.”

“They could start to recreate the investigative steps that were taken,” Kravis said. That information, in the hands of a foreign adversary, could be “used to avoid detection in the future.”

Friedrich said that it had become “very difficult” in the “abstract” for her to balance the national security concerns of the government and the right of the defendant to prepare for trial.

“It’s very hard for me, in the abstract, without any better understanding of what these documents are, to weigh competing interests,” she said.

Friedrich had previously set up a system in which Concord’s attorneys could go through a firewall counsel — a Justice Department attorney not working on the case who could nonetheless assess national security risks in discovery production —to ask to share specific documents with employees of Concord.

Eric Dubelier, an attorney for Concord, said Thursday that a request several months ago to share 80 documents with his client had gone nowhere with the firewall counsel.

Judge Friedrich said that they were in a different stage now, now that she had dealt with the various unsuccessful attempts by Concord to get the whole case thrown out.

A major issue in the dispute is that if Prigozhin was allowed to come to the U.S. to view the discovery, he would likely be arrested. Upon questioning from Friedrich, Kravis said that it was his understanding, from Concord’s previous filings in the case, that there was another Concord associate — someone in its legal department — who was not under indictment and who could, in theory, travel to the U.S. to view certain discovery documents without fear of being arrested.

Dubelier said the idea of having his Russian clients travel to the U.S was a “nonstarter.” He referenced a proposal that he had filed under seal, but the details of that proposal are publicly not known.

The public portion of the hearing lasted about an hour. The judge then cleared out the courtroom to continue the hearing under seal. ... ll-company
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Thu Mar 07, 2019 7:59 pm

The Domestic Conspiracy Is Hiding In Plain Sight Erik Prince

Wendy Siegelman

EDNY indictment charges ex Mozambican govt officials and business execs in alleged $2 billion fraud/money laundering scheme

Erik Prince's Frontier Services Group pursued joint venture in 2018 with companies involved in scheme (Proindicus, EMATUM, MAM)

Three Former Mozambican Government Officials and Five Business Executives Indicted in Alleged $2 Billion Fraud and Money Laundering Scheme That Victimized U.S. Investors

More Than $200 Million in Alleged Bribes and Kickbacks Paid to Mozambican Government Officials and Investment Bankers

BROOKLYN, NY – An indictment was unsealed on March 4, 2019, charging Najib Allam, an executive of the Privinvest family of maritime services companies, and Teofilo Nhangumele and Antonio do Rosario, former Mozambican government officials, for their roles in a $2 billion fraud and money laundering scheme that victimized investors in the United States and around the world. The indictment was previously unsealed on January 3, 2019 as to co-defendants Jean Boustani, a Privinvest executive, Manuel Chang, the former Finance Minister of Mozambique, and Andrew Pearse, Surjan Singh and Detelina Subeva, former high-ranking investment bankers at an international investment bank (the Investment Bank). Each defendant is charged with wire fraud conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy. In addition, Boustani, Allam, Chang, do Rosario, Pearse, Singh and Subeva are charged with securities fraud conspiracy. Pearse, Singh and Subeva are also charged with conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery and internal controls provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

Richard P. Donoghue, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Brian A. Benczkowski, Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, and William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), announced the charges.

“As charged in the indictment, the defendants orchestrated an immense fraud and bribery scheme that took advantage of the United States financial system, defrauded its investors and adversely impacted the economy of Mozambique, in order to line their own pockets with hundreds of millions of dollars,” said United States Attorney Donoghue. “This indictment underscores the Department of Justice’s continuing efforts to end such fraudulent and corrupt practices and to hold those responsible to account for their crimes.”

“The indictment unsealed today alleges a brazen international criminal scheme in which corrupt Mozambique government officials, corporate executives, and investment bankers stole approximately $200 million in loan proceeds that were meant to benefit the people of Mozambique,” said Assistant Attorney General Benczkowski. “The Department of Justice and our law enforcement partners are dedicated to using all tools at our disposal to prosecute those who engage in money laundering, financial fraud and corruption at the expense of U.S. investors, wherever those individuals may be located.”

“Today’s indictment proves that no matter who you are, or what position of power you’re in, you’re not immune from prosecution,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Sweeney. "The FBI will continue to use all resources at our disposal to uncover crimes of this nature and expose them for what they really are.”

The Fraudulent Scheme

The indictment alleges that between approximately 2013 and 2016, Boustani, Allam, Nhangumele, do Rosario, Chang, Pearse, Singh, Subeva and their co-conspirators ensured that the Investment Bank, and another foreign investment bank, would arrange for more than $2 billion to be extended, in three loans, to companies owned and controlled by the Mozambican government: Proindicus S.A. (Proindicus), Empresa Moçambicana de Atum, S.A. (EMATUM) and Mozambique Asset Management (MAM). The proceeds of the loans were intended to fund three maritime projects for which Privinvest was to provide the equipment and services. Specifically, Proindicus was to perform coastal surveillance, EMATUM was to engage in tuna fishing and MAM was to build and maintain shipyards.

Instead, the defendants and their co-conspirators illegally facilitated Privinvest’s criminal diversion of more than $200 million of the proceeds of the loans. These stolen funds included more than $150 million that Privinvest — at the direction of Boustani, Allam and others — used to bribe Chang, Nhangumele, do Rosario and other Mozambican government officials to ensure that companies owned and controlled by the Mozambican government would enter into the loan arrangements, and that the government of Mozambique would guarantee those loans. In addition, Privinvest diverted approximately $50 million in kickback payments to Pearse, Singh and Subeva, who assisted the co-conspirators to obtain financing for the loans through the Investment Bank and the other foreign investment bank. The loans were subsequently sold in whole or in part to investors worldwide, including in the United States. In doing so, the participants in the scheme conspired to defraud these investors by misrepresenting how the loan proceeds would be used, the amount and maturity dates of other financial obligations held by Mozambique and the ability of the government of Mozambique to repay the loans.

To date, the companies controlled by the government of Mozambique have failed to make more than $700 million of loan repayments that have become due.

The Defendants

Boustani, a citizen and resident of Lebanon and Antigua and Barbuda, was the lead salesperson and negotiator for Privinvest, and is charged for his role in coordinating the payment by Privinvest of more than $200 million in bribe and kickback payments to Mozambican government officials and investment bankers in order to facilitate the three loans. He is alleged to have personally received at least $15 million from the scheme. Boustani was arrested in Queens, New York on January 2, 2019 and arraigned later that day in federal court in Brooklyn. Boustani has pleaded not guilty to the charges, and a trial date has not yet been set.

Allam, a citizen of Lebanon, was the Chief Financial Officer of Privinvest, and is charged for his role in helping Boustani and others coordinate the payment by Privinvest of more than $200 million in bribe and kickback payments. Allam remains at large.

Nhangumele, a citizen and resident of Mozambique, acted in an official capacity on behalf of the President of Mozambique during the charged scheme, and is charged for his role in facilitating the payment by Privinvest of over $150 million to Mozambican government officials to gain approval for the maritime projects, and to cause Mozambique to borrow more than $2 billion from the two investment banks in government-guaranteed loans to finance the projects. Nhangumele has not yet been arrested on the charges in this indictment and Nhangumele is not currently in U.S. custody.

Do Rosario, a citizen and resident of Mozambique, held positions within the Mozambican government, including with the Mozambican state intelligence service, known as “SISE,” and managerial roles for each of the three state-owned entities formed to undertake the maritime projects that are the subject of the indictment. He is charged for his role in ensuring that Mozambique would undertake the maritime projects and award the contracts for those projects to Privinvest, and that Finance Minister Chang would issue government guarantees binding Mozambique to repay $2 billion in loans to undertake the projects. He is alleged to have personally received more than $12 million from the scheme. Do Rosario has not yet been arrested on the charges in this indictment and is not currently in U.S. custody.

Chang, a citizen and resident of Mozambique, was the former Finance Minister of Mozambique, and is charged for signing guarantees on behalf of Mozambique for the three corrupt loans. He is alleged to have personally received at least $5 million from the scheme. Chang was arrested on December 29, 2018, in South Africa, pursuant to a provisional arrest warrant issued at the request of the United States. The United States is seeking his extradition.

Pearse, a citizen of New Zealand, Singh, a citizen of the United Kingdom and Subeva, a citizen of Bulgaria, reside in the United Kingdom. At the time of the charged scheme, Pearse and Singh were managing directors, and Subeva was a vice president, of the Investment Bank. Each has been charged for facilitating bribe payments to government officials in Mozambique and for circumventing the internal accounting controls of the Investment Bank, which arranged two of the three loans. Pearse, Singh and Subeva were arrested on January 3, 2019, in the United Kingdom, pursuant to provisional arrest warrants issued at the request of the United States. The United States is seeking their extradition.

* * * * *

The charges in the indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

The investigation is being conducted by the FBI’s New York Field Office. The government’s case is being handled by the Business and Securities Fraud Section of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York (EDNY), the Criminal Division’s Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section (MLARS) and the Fraud Section. Assistant United States Attorneys Matthew S. Amatruda and Mark E. Bini of the EDNY, Trial Attorneys Margaret Moeser and Sean W. O’Donnell of MLARS and Trial Attorney David M. Fuhr of the Fraud Section are prosecuting the case.

The Criminal Division’s Office of International Affairs provided critical assistance in this case. The Department appreciates the significant cooperation and assistance provided by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. The Department also appreciates the assistance provided by law enforcement authorities in the United Kingdom and in South Africa.

The Defendants:

Age: 40
Lebanon, Antigua and Barbuda

Age: 58

Age: 63

Age: 44

Age: 50

Age: 49
United Kingdom

Age: 44
United Kingdom

Age: 37
United Kingdom

E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 18-CR-681 (WFK) ... s-indicted

Indictment alleges 2013-2016 several people including Antonio do Rosario arranged for more than $2 billion in loans to govt owned companies Proindicus, EMATUM & MAM - and then illegally facilitated diversion of more than $200 million of the loan proceeds ... s-indicted


A May 2018 story reported that Erik Prince's Frontier Services Group (FSG) was in discussions to take over half of Ematum and to partner with Proindicus

Wendy Siegelman Retweeted Robert Young Pelton
Wendy Siegelman added,
Robert Young Pelton

This comes on the heels of a potential workout of the secret debt used to create dockyard MAM, EMATUN (TUNAMAR) and security company PROINDICUS. A fabulous con in which a creative expat banker managed to convince Lloyds to insure sovereign debt failure. ... cus-e-mam-
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There is no indication that Prince or Frontier Services Group is involved in the indictment - but they were involved in discussions that took place with the companies named in the indictment a few years following the alleged fraud and money laundering scheme

Is Another Boko Haram or Al-Shabaab Erupting in Mozambique? Some are suspicious of the coincidental upsurge in attacks & the award of a $750 million contract for protecting gas fields to a private security consortium that includes Erik Prince, by @PFabric…
Show this thread

Mozambique defaulted on $2 bil loan from Credit Suisse in Mar '16, the IMF halted aid. Erik Prince & FSG offered to recapitalize the tuna project & take care of the $ 2 bil debt - a deal was signed Dec 2017 a month after FBI started investigating the deal

Image ... ozambique/
Last edited by seemslikeadream on Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:00 pm

On August 2, 2016, Paul Manafort Gave Konstantin Kilimnik 75 Pages of Recent, Detailed Polling Data & Then Discussed Sanctions Relief

oh to be a rich white man in America

trump's campaign chairman

WHITE COLLAR CRIME GUY GETS 47 MONTHS from a judge that thinks he is a really good guy all the while he worked for people like Marcos..... Viktor Yanukovych ....Jonas Savimbi,....on to next sentencing where the judge is not inclined to be so leinent

dodging taxes and committing bank fraud



47 months for Manafort before Judge Ellis. That's about 40% of what I guessed, 120 months. It's a very substantial departure (although almost certainly a legal sentence) from the guidelines of 19-24 years.


/2 A departure from 19 years to under 4 years is very dramatic. It's the kind of departure defense lawyers dream of. It's the kind of departure that's FAR more likely to be enjoyed by the sort of person who commits crimes with banks and wires than drugs or guns.

/3 It's pretty surprisingly lenient (though, in context, longer than average for white collar crime). Judge Jackson comes next. She can sentence up to 10, and can make it concurrent or consecutive. This changes my assessment of what she'll do. I suspect she'll max him. /end

Crystal Mason got 5yrs in prison for accidentally voting because she didn’t know she couldn’t vote as a felon on parole.
Paul Manafort, a man who committed fraud against multiple institutions, and our country - was just sentenced to less than 4yrs.
White privilege at work.

Manafort spent a career lobbying for arms for clients who burned children alive; he represented gangsters who broke democracies and whose thievery destroyed health systems. He literally created corruption as we know it in Washington.

Seth Abramson

NEVER FORGET: Not only has trump known Manafort for decades; not only did they live in the same building from the mid-2000s on; not only was Manafort a trump adviser from March 2016 through Election Day; he stayed in touch with the White House *into 2017*.

NEVER FORGET: Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort's daughter texted a close friend in April 2016 saying that "Dad [Manafort] and Trump are literally living in the same building and mom says they go up and down all day long hanging and plotting together."

but Manafort will get life in prison next week

New York prosecutor reportedly preparing to charge criminal ex-Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort whether or not president pardons him ... rdons.html
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby mentalgongfu2 » Fri Mar 08, 2019 4:17 am

From what I see, itt's not so much white privilege in this case SLAD, as it is the privilege of the moneyed class and the company they keep. Both may factor in it, but I think the one weights more heavily than the other in this particular case.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Fri Mar 08, 2019 10:56 am


March 8, 2019/2 Comments/in 2016 Presidential Election, Mueller Probe /by empty wheel

I want to compare a detail from a Roger Stone filing with the flyer that John Dowd released last year to snooker the press into believing that Trump had been more cooperative than any other President before (which I debunked here).

As one measure of Trump’s purported cooperation, Dowd bragged just over a year ago about how much the White House had reviewed and turned over and how much Trump’s campaign had turned over. He provided those numbers in pages.

In all, the White House provided over 20,000 pages to the Special Counsel in connection with the categories of material identified (over 100,000 pages of documents were reviewed by the White House).


In all, over 1.4 million pages of documents were produced to the Special Counsel by the Campaign.

I made some effort last year to chase down what that number, 1.4 million, meant, but none of the people I asked were able to explain it.

Whatever the number means, however, it compares badly with what Mueller has collected on Stone. According to Stone’s lawyers, there are already 2.23 million pages of documents in discovery ready to go, with terabytes more still being prepared for review.

The defense’s ediscovery vendor identified approximately 2.23 million pages of “Load Ready” data provided by the government, including the “Hot Documents” identified, without warranty, by the government. There is approximately another 4.5 Terabytes of “Non-Load” ready data provided by the government that is in the process of being filtered and prepared for review.

The stuff still being filtered may be what FBI seized when they arrested Stone in January. If that’s right, it means that just on what Mueller had collected without raiding Stone’s home, he already had 35% more volume than the entirety of what the Trump campaign congratulated itself for turning over to Mueller.

Admittedly, the “hot documents” — the ones that go to the core of the case — are likely a far smaller subset (and will overlap to the extent that people on the campaign, like Steve Bannon, were talking to Stone about WikiLeaks releases). But the numbers at least put some perspective on how much smoke John Dowd was blowing last year when he pretended that his client was being all that forthcoming with the Special Counsel. ... rned-over/


Trump cheered Kraft’s team to Super Bowl victory with founder of spa where he was busted

Caitlin OstroffMarch 02, 2019 1:43 PM
Seated at a round table littered with party favors and the paper-cutout footballs that have become tradition at his annual Super Bowl Watch Party, President Donald Trump cheered the New England Patriots and his longtime friend, team owner Robert Kraft, to victory over the Los Angeles Rams on Feb. 3.

Sometime during the party at Trump’s West Palm Beach country club, the president turned in his chair to look over his right shoulder, smiling for a photo with two women at a table behind him.

The woman who snapped the blurry Super Bowl selfie with the president was Li Yang, 45, a self-made entrepreneur from China who started a chain of Asian day spas in South Florida. Over the years, these establishments — many of which operate under the name Tokyo Day Spas — have gained a reputation for offering sexual services.

Nineteen days after Trump and Yang posed together while rooting for the Patriots, authorities would charge Kraft with soliciting prostitution at a spa in Jupiter that Yang had founded more than a decade earlier.

Yang says she had long since sold Orchids of Asia Day Spa, the massage parlor where authorities say they caught Kraft on camera paying for oral sex the morning of the Jan. 20 AFC Championship game — his second visit in 24 hours. (Kraft has denied breaking the law.) Yang, who goes by Cindy, was not charged in the multi-agency anti-human trafficking operation last month that shut down 10 Asian day spas in Florida, none of which are registered to her or her family.

The Kraft bust brought global attention to the proliferation of Asian day spas across the country, some of which are thinly disguised houses of prostitution — and experts say could be engaged in human trafficking to fill demand.

Patriots owner Robert Kraft charged with soliciting prostitution

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was charged with two counts of soliciting prostitution at a spa in Jupiter, Fla.

By Eric Garland

Yang’s family still owns several South Florida spas. The family’s Tokyo Day Spa branches have attracted the attention of at least two local police agencies over allegations of prostitution, and are discussed online as places where men can pay for sexual extras.

“If you’re just wanting to get a ‘rub and tug,’ this might be one of the best places in West Palm Beach,” one Internet commenter wrote about a Tokyo Day Spas’ parlor. A massage therapist at a different location informed police in late 2016 that some employees at the parlor were selling sex and said management encouraged the behavior.

Cindy Yang poses with President Donald Trump at a fundraiser at Mar-a-Lago on March 2, 2018. She received a signed photograph. A flyer for the event advertised a “reception, photo and two seats for a dinner with President Trump” for a donation of $50,000.

In a brief phone interview, Yang said she and her family have never broken the law, but did not answer questions about whether she knew of the allegations that therapists in her spas were offering sex. She added that she was out of the business, would soon be moving to Washington, D.C., and didn’t want any negative press.

Before the 2016 general election, Yang offered no evidence of political engagement. She hadn’t voted in 10 years, records showed. But she has now become a fixture at Republican political events up and down the East Coast. Her Facebook is covered in photos of herself standing with President Trump, his two sons, Eric and Donald Jr., Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Sen. Rick Scott, Sarah Palin, the president’s campaign manager and an assortment of other high-level Republican operators she has met at charity events, political fundraisers and galas, many of which require hefty donations to attend. She sometimes carries a rhinestone encrusted MAGA clutch purse.

Future Florida governor Ron DeSantis (center) attended a pro-Israel gala at Mar-a-Lago on Feb. 25, 2018. The event was also attended by Cindy Yang (far left). Tickets cost $1,000 per person, according to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz.

Yang has shown considerable political largesse. Since 2017, she and her close relatives have contributed more than $42,000 to Trump Victory, a political action committee, and more than $16,000 to the president’s campaign.

In February 2018, Yang was invited by the White House to participate in an event hosted by the Asian American and Pacific Islander Initiative, an advisory commission Trump established by executive order the year before. Later in the year, she attended at least two more AAPI events in Washington D.C., according to her Facebook page.

The White House, the Trump campaign and the Trump Organization did not respond to requests for comment.


As some established political elites have distanced themselves from the president, a new group of people is filling open seats at political events.

Some are businessmen like Kraft who have always been influential because of their wealth but under Trump have gained added political status. (Months before the bust, Trump thanked Kraft for his role in a major international success: Clinching the 2026 World Cup for North America.)

Others in the Trump orbit are political novices like Yang, who came to the United States roughly 20 years ago.

In 2007, Yang started what would become a large chain of Tokyo Day Spas.
tokyo day spa pb.JPG
Cindy Yang and her family members operate the Tokyo Day Spa & Massages parlor, as well as a nail salon, at a strip mall in Palm Beach Gardens. It is part of a chain of spas the family controls.

Sarah Blaskey

The first to open was her flagship, which is still in business and run by her husband, Zubin Gong, in Palm Beach Gardens.

The next was a Tokyo Day Spa in Jupiter that would later become Orchids of Asia after Yang sold it to another businesswoman, Hua Zhang, around 2013. Zhang, who was charged in February with racketeering and running a house of prostitution and has pleaded not guilty, declined to comment when contacted at her Martin County home.

Online reviews from prior to 2013 suggest sex was for sale at the Tokyo Day Spa Jupiter location even before it became Orchids of Asia. Although the name and ownership of the location have changed, the decor has not. A photo from a Tokyo Day Spa Yelp review shows the same couch, the same wall hanging and the same faux plant as now.

“Used to be known as Tokyo Day Spa and Massage — most of the same girls still work there,” a Yelp reviewer wrote of Orchids of Asia in 2013.

Over the past decade, Yang and her family members have opened at least six locations across Palm Beach and Broward counties, including a massage school established in 2011 and several nail salons. In at least three cases, online classifieds written in Chinese indicate Yang opened the spas and then flipped them, advertising sale prices ranging from $55,000 to $88,000.

Organized networks of massage parlors offering sex are common, according to Bradley Myles, CEO of Polaris Project, a nonprofit dedicated to ending human trafficking in the sex work industry. The parlors have licenses, allowing them operate the illicit part of their businesses behind a smokescreen of legitimacy.

“Having a school associated with several locations that are engaged in illicit massage business — It’s one more way of appearing legitimate,” Miles said, commenting generally rather than specifically on Tokyo Day Spas. He said the owners of such chains often use schools to recruit and groom women to work in their parlors, even giving them the answers to the licensing exams ahead of time if they are good candidates for sex work.

Nationally, the illicit massage industry is worth over $2.5 billion, according to Polaris.

Yang also owns several residential properties around South Florida, including a tiny $240,000 condo on Miami’s waterfront. She built her success on hard work and long hours, according to an online profile of Yang that was posted on The site also features classified ads for erotic massage services. It’s unclear who posted Yang’s profile there or why.

Sex for sale

When a female massage therapist started finding used condoms in the trash at one of Yang’s Tokyo Day Spas, she became concerned that the parlor was not what it seemed.

The woman, who spoke only Mandarin, asked an English-speaking relative to call police after she heard the sounds of sex coming from several private massage rooms. Her tip led a police vice squad to begin surveilling the parlor from a van parked outside, the woman told the Miami Herald in an interview. Cops hidden in the vehicle took photographs of the people coming and going. The woman said she went undercover, snapping pictures of receipts when no one was looking. After the trash was taken outside, she would call her relative, who would then ring up the cops.

“There should be some condoms out back,” the relative would report.

The woman, who asked the Herald to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation, slept on a massage bed in a back room during her time at the spa. She cooked on a hotplate.

On one occasion, the former therapist was giving a customer a massage when he exposed himself and demanded oral sex. She said she ran from the room crying. A manager was angry that the customer had been treated “badly,” the woman said.

“You cannot hurt the customers’ feelings,” the manager later said at a staff meeting, according to the woman.

No charges appear to have been brought as a result of the investigation. The Herald reviewed documents related to the case but is not naming the police department in order to preserve the woman’s anonymity.

That wasn’t the only Tokyo Day Spa location where sex was allegedly available.

On Feb. 7, 2014, a man called the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. He had gone to Tokyo Day Spas branch in Royal Palm Beach , where a therapist touched him in an “inappropriate genital area” and continued to do so even after he said no, according to a police report.

Six spas within the Tokyo Day Spas chain show up on online forums like and, which are crowd-sourced review sites where users point each other to spas where sex is offered.

False positives on those sites are unlikely, according to the Polaris Project.

“I don’t think the guys have any interest in claiming a place was something it’s not,” Myles from Polaris said. “The guys have an interest in [identifying] where you really can buy sex.”

Online ads on obscure websites also raise flags about Yang’s businesses. In an ad written in Chinese recruiting masseuses, Yang stated that anyone over the age of 45 need not apply. Phone numbers associated with members of the Yang family are connected to various apparently old online advertisements for more explicit sex services. One advertises a masseuse who makes hotel visits.

In a 2016 Yelp review of the Tokyo Day Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, a woman wrote that her husband went in for a 15-minute, $40 massage, but was offered unwanted sexual favors instead.

“Stay far away unless you’re into that kind of thing,” she wrote.

In a reply to the review, the business posted an apology from someone identified as “Cindy Y.”

“We are very sorry to hear what happened to your husband,” Cindy Y. wrote. “We do not offer those kinds of service[s] and we will do everything necessary to make sure this does not happen again.”
Cindy Yang appears with Donald Trump Jr at a Mar-a-Lago gala in late 2018.

On, one comment warns that “your mileage may vary” at Tokyo Day Spas, meaning sex may not be available depending on the therapist.

“Been here many times, some play, some don’t,” a man wrote in 2016.

But others raved.

“I had one of those toe curling experiences,” a reviewer said.

Political awakening

Around three years ago, Yang announced that she was pursuing a “new life” in a series of Facebook posts.

Her portfolio broadened to include an investment consulting business, a travel agency and a charity.

The charity, founded in 2015 under the name Overseas International Female Organization, was originally intended to promote cultural exchanges for women, according to its mission statement. A few months later, the name was changed to Women’s Charity Foundation. The foundation once hosted a beauty pageant at the luxury Biltmore Hotel featuring young women brought in by “entertainment companies,” according to one of the event’s co-sponsors, Li Yun, who told the Miami Herald the event was “embarrassing,” “unsuccessful” and “disorganized.” The nonprofit doesn’t appear in a database of active Florida charities.

At the very end of 2015, Yang began donating small amounts of money to Jeb Bush’s presidential campaign. In 2016, Yang posted Facebook photos from a Republican women’s event in South Florida with the caption: “The new life will start.”

Around that time, she appears to have pulled her name from the official business records related to Tokyo Day Spas, though her husband still manages at least one of the spas and other companies are now under her parents’ names. Recently, one of her businesses, now listed in her mother’s name, declared bankruptcy, listing more than $150,000 of debt.

When Donald Trump became a serious candidate for president, politics began to dominate her social media presence.

In January 2017, she was in the crowd at Trump’s inauguration in Washington D.C. Later that year, she snapped a photo with Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway. In December, she attended her first elite event at President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago, a poolside steak lunch.

In September 2018, Yang received a personalized note from the president and first lady. It read: “Thank you for your friendship and dedication to our cause. Leaders like you in Florida are the key to fulfilling our bold agenda to Make America Great Again!”

Yang told the Miami Herald she doesn’t know the president personally, and that she doesn’t work for him, other than to volunteer for campaign events.

“I just come to some events. There’s nothing special,” Yang said. Although she has claimed online to be a member of Trump clubs, she told the Herald she does not in fact belong to any.

Yang opened an investment consulting firm in 2017 targeting Chinese businesses hoping to expand to U.S. markets. The website advertises her new political connections, and promises her clients pictures with the president and other high-level members of his administration. Much of its website showcases photographs of her own encounters with the Trump family and other high-profile conservatives.
Cindy Yang posed with Eric Trump at Mar-a-Lago in 2019.
Over the past two years, Yang has racked up a who’s who of photos with politicians at more than a dozen political events. She has enough pictures of the president’s private clubs to fill an album.

In 2018, she attended a Safari Night at Mar-a-Lago hosted by the president’s sister, Elizabeth Trump Grau, as well as the White House’s celebration of the Lunar New Year at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. She took photos with Florida’s soon-to-be-governor, Ron DeSantis, at a pro-Israel gala held at Mar-a-Lago, met U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao in Washington D.C., and posed with Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale, U.S. Rep. Brian Mast and former Florida Agriculture Secretary Adam Putnam.

She was photographed with Donald Trump Jr. at a winter Mar-a-Lago gala for Turning Points USA, the conservative college organization, and met Eric Trump last month.

In January, she attended the Sunshine Ball in Washington D.C. hosted by Rick Scott, snagging a photo with the newly elected senator.

She has also posted photos of herself meeting conservative celebrities, including former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, onetime Trump administration adviser Sebastian Gorka, Fox News host Jesse Watters and actor Jon Voight.
Cindy Yang attended Sen. Rick Scott’s Sunshine Ball in Washington D.C. on Jan. 8. The event asked $25,000 for a photo opportunity with Scott.

Her Super Bowl selfie with Trump was captioned: “We love our president.”

It’s not clear exactly what level of scrutiny she was subjected to in order to get that close to Trump.

Anyone “expected to be within close proximity to the president for a planned purpose” at Mar-a-Lago must go through an “enhanced background check” by the Secret Service and other federal agencies, according to a January report by the Government Accountability Office.

No one contacted by the Herald said they recognized Yang.

Brad Stewart, deputy chief of staff for Mast, said the Republican congressman “doesn’t know Yang or remember meeting her” at the Palm Beach GOP Lincoln Day Dinner at Mar-a-Lago on March 16, 2018.

Chris Hartline, Rick Scott’s communications director, said the senator had “met literally hundreds of thousands of people over his eight years as governor. He doesn’t know this woman.”

DeSantis’ press office did not respond to a request for comment.

Shedding light on human trafficking in massage parlors

Traffickers use coercion and fraud to lure their victims into forced labor and sexual exploitation in illicit massage businesses. Here’s a look into how that human trafficking system works.

By Nicole L. Cvetnic / McClatchy

Miami Herald writer Xinjun Li contributed to this report. ... 86429.html

Brad Paschal

Citizens for Ethics

Why did the government never certify Bill Shine's financial disclosure?

Since Shine so unexpectedly resigned and went to hide behind the trump campaign, I'm guessing a big nasty story will hit today. With all things trump -

Is there no spell check at the White House?


All the Legal Trouble in trumpworld - Robert Mueller may be the least of the president’s worries. In addition to Mueller, there are 10 other investigations linked to trump, his campaign staffers, and inner circle


All the Legal Trouble in Trumpworld

Robert Mueller may be the least of the president’s worries.

Jefcoate O’DonnellMarch 8, 2019, 6:00 AM

The looming conclusion of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into U.S. President Donald Trump may be dominating the conversation in Washington. But Trump faces a long list of other ongoing inquiries, some of which may ultimately cause him far more trouble. Here are the 10 most pressing investigations into the president, his campaign staffers, and his inner circle.

Violation of campaign finance laws

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York

Michael Cohen, Trump’s former personal attorney and longtime fixer, has testified that Trump ordered him to pay hush money to silence adulterous scandals that could have hurt his presidential campaign.

Who's Implicated: Michael Cohen

Danger for Trump: This case directly implicates the president.

Status: Cohen has pleaded guilty to “felonies for the benefit of, at the direction of, and in coordination with” Trump. Additionally, in testimony before the House Oversight Committee on Feb. 27, Cohen showed off personal checks signed by Trump, which Cohen testified were to reimburse him for the payoffs. Cohen added that Trump was involved in other illegal activities but said he could not comment because of the ongoing nature of the investigations.

Irregular spending by Trump’s inaugural committee

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office, the District of Columbia Attorney General’s Office

Trump raised a record $107 million for his inauguration, but investigators have little idea where the money went. Prosecutors are investigating an array of troubling maneuvers that include allegedly booking rooms at the Trump Hotel at inflated prices and mail and wire fraud and money laundering. WIS Media Partners, a firm run by a friend of first lady Melania Trump, was the highest paid contractor for the inauguration, earning $26 million.

Who's Involved: Trump’s inaugural committee, Ivanka Trump, Eric Trump, Donald Trump Jr., former Trump campaign official Rick Gates, and WIS Media Partners

Danger for Trump: Trump is facing intense scrutiny across three jurisdictions as a result of his inaugural committee’s behavior.

Status: In February, courts subpoenaed the inaugural committee for documentation, though no one has been charged with any wrongdoing. The case is ongoing.

Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort used a shell organization to lobby for the pro-Russian government of Ukraine, enlisting white-shoe lobbyists Podesta Group and Mercury Public Affairs, as well as the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, without properly registering as a foreign agent.

Who's Implicated: Paul Manafort’s lawyer Gregory Craig, and lobbyists Vin Weber and Tony Podesta

Danger for Trump: The case shows the pro-Russian tilt of his campaign manager and his allegedly illegal operations. It also shows Mueller’s ability to work closely with other prosecutors to investigate a broader range of potential wrongdoing than he can as special counsel.

Status: Skadden, which allegedly advised Mercury not to register as a foreign agent, settled its case for $4.6 million, representing the amount it earned from its shadowy work in Ukraine. Skadden, Mercury and the now defunct Podesta Group have all registered retroactively as acting on behalf of a foreign government.

Paul Manafort lied about a $125,000 payment he received from the Trump super PAC “Rebuilding America Now” in 2017. Coordination between political action committees and campaigns is illegal. Manafort’s associate, Sam Patten, has pleaded guilty to FARA violations and his testimony shed light on the details of how foreign actors worked to gain access to Trump's inauguration. Patten revealed that he secured tickets to the event on behalf of an oligarch from Ukraine by organizing a U.S. citizen to act as a proxy buyer.

Who's Implicated: Paul Manafort, Sam Patten, and Rebuilding America Now

Danger for Trump: The case shows how those close to Trump misused campaign money and facilitated improper access to the president by foreign influencers from Ukraine and Russia from the very start of his term.

Status: Manafort is behind bars for violating his plea deals with Mueller and will face sentencing on March 13 for conspiracy against the United States and conspiracy to obstruct justice through witness tampering. Patten has pleaded guilty to violations of the Foreign Agents Registration Act and faces sentencing in April; he is cooperating with investigators.

The New York Attorney General’s Office and the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance

The lawsuit skewers the Trump Foundation for alleged “extensive unlawful political coordination with the Trump presidential campaign” as well as “repeated and willful self-dealing transactions” and “violations of basic legal obligations for non-profit foundations.” The alleged misconduct of the Trump Foundation includes using funds to buy a portrait of the president at a fundraiser in an effort to burnish his image, as well as allegedly using its money to funnel resources into organizing a campaign fundraiser in Iowa that raised millions of dollars.

Who's Implicated: Donald Trump, Ivanka Trump, Eric Trump, and Donald Trump Jr.

Danger for Trump: This case is especially damaging for the president. Former New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood said the Trump Foundation functioned as “little more than a checkbook to serve Mr. Trump’s business and political interests,” and Letitia James, who took the case over when she was sworn in as Attorney General is seeking a 10-year ban on Trump and his adult children from running nonprofits, as well as repayment of $2.8 million.

Status: The case is ongoing, but the Trump Foundation has been dissolved, and its remaining funds are set to be distributed to other nonprofits.

Return to Top

Allegations of tax fraud and tax evasion by the Trump family

The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio

Following a New York Times investigation into the Trump family’s finances, city and state officials said they were investigating allegations that the Trump family may have committed tax fraud and tax evasion over the course of several decades.

Who's Implicated: Donald Trump and the Trump Organization

Danger for Trump: Evidence of systemic tax evasion could strike a major blow to Trump’s credibility. Trump’s unreleased tax returns have been a high-profile departure from U.S. political norms. The House Ways and Means Committee has the power to demand the release of Trump’s tax returns, something that Democrats are now calling for with renewed energy after Michael Cohen told Congress that he believed Trump had failed to release his tax returns because he did not want tax experts to “run through his tax return and start ripping it to pieces” and feared “taxable consequences [and] penalties.”

Status: The investigation is ongoing.

Return to Top

United States v. Maria Butina

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the National Security Division of the U.S. Justice Department

Maria Butina is the first Russian to be prosecuted directly for attempting to influence the U.S. political landscape in the Trump era. Butina posed as a gun rights activist and gained influence in the Republican Party and the National Rifle Association, all while allegedly working as a Russian agent.

Who's Implicated: Maria Butina

Danger for Trump: The case is an additional indication of Russia’s interest in advancing Trump’s candidacy. Butina also managed to directly ask Trump a question about Russia and sanctions at the start of his run for president. “What will be your foreign politics … and do you want to continue the politics of sanctions?” Butina asked. Trump responded, “I believe I would get along on very nicely with [Vladimir] Putin.”

Status: Butina pleaded guilty to conspiring against the United States. In late February, the court declined to set a date for her sentencing, as she continues to cooperate with U.S. authorities. She will likely be deported to Russia at the conclusion of any time she serves.

Return to Top

Russian disinformation campaigns

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia

“Project Lakhta,” a Russian disinformation campaign that used social media to interfere in the 2016 presidential and 2018 midterm elections, worked to “sow discord in the U.S. political system and to undermine faith in our democratic institutions,” according to prosecutors.

Who's Implicated: Elena Alekseevna Khusyaynova, allegedly the chief accountant for Project Lakhta

Danger for Trump: The case provides insight into the inner workings of Russian efforts to boost Trump’s electoral chances, as well as prosecutors’ determination to hold foreign actors accountable for interfering in U.S. elections.

Status: Khusyaynova has been indicted, and the case is ongoing.

Return to Top

Improper Turkish influence inside Trump’s campaign and administration.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia

Former Trump National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and his business partner Bijan Kian allegedly served as unregistered lobbyists for Turkish interests and were paid to undermine Turkish cleric and regime gadfly Fethullah Gulen as a part of a 90-day campaign against him that was dubbed “Operation Confidence.”

Who's Implicated: Michael Flynn, Bijan Kian, and Kamil Ekim Alptekin, who created the firm Inovo that allegedly hired the Flynn Intel Group to launch an anti-Gulen campaign

Danger for Trump: The president’s efforts to get the FBI to stop investigating Flynn during the early days of his administration led directly to the appointment of Mueller as special counsel.

Status: Kian and Alptekin were indicted in December 2018, and Kian pleaded not guilty. Alptekin has yet to appear in a U.S. court, and his location is unknown. Flynn is cooperating with the Mueller investigation and will serve as a principal witness when Kian goes on trial in July.

Return to Top

Alleged violations of the U.S. Constitution’s emoluments clause

The attorneys general’s offices for Maryland and the District of Columbia

The Constitution bars the president from using his office to profit from foreign states. The Washington Post reported in December 2018 that Saudi lobbyists had paid for an estimated 500 nights in Trump’s D.C. hotel over a three-month period so that military veterans could come to Washington and lobby against a bill the Saudi government opposed. Profits from the Saudi government going to a Trump-owned hotel would seem to violate the emoluments clause.

Who's Implicated: Donald Trump and the Trump Organization

Danger for Trump: He is directly implicated. A clear constitutional violation could raise the question of impeachment.

Status: The court rejected Trump’s initial efforts to shut the investigation down. The case is ongoing. ... als-trump/
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Fri Mar 08, 2019 10:02 pm

Erik Prince just got busted for felony perjury

Erik Prince acknowledges 2016 Trump Tower meeting for first time

When pressed by Mehdi Hasan on Head to Head, Blackwater founder Erik Prince said the meeting was about 'Iran policy'.

4 hours ago
Erik Prince, founder of the private American security company Blackwater, has admitted to meeting with members of the Trump campaign in August 2016 after, according to a public transcript, apparently failing to disclose the gathering during his testimony in front of the House Intelligence Committee last year.

When asked by Mehdi Hasan on Al Jazeera's Head to Head programme about the August 3, 2016 Trump Tower meeting that reportedly took place between Prince, Donald Trump campaign officials, an Israeli social media specialist and an emissary for two Gulf princes, the former Blackwater CEO did not deny the meeting took place.

"We were there … to talk about Iran policy," Prince said when pressed by Hasan.

According to the New York Times, that meeting was attended by Prince, Donald Trump Jr, George Nader, a former Blackwater employee and emissary for the crown princes of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, Stephen Miller, then a top aide to the Trump campaign and currently a senior policy adviser to the president and Joel Zamel, whose company, Psy-Group, employed former Israeli intelligence operatives and specialised in social media manipulation, and was reportedly contacted by Rick Gates, a top Trump campaign official, for proposals for social media manipulation to help Trump win the election.

Prince apparently did not, however, disclose information about the meeting when testifying before the House Intelligence Committee on November 30, 2017, according to a public transcript.

Prince testified under oath that he had "no official, or, really unofficial role" in the Trump campaign. He also told the House panel that he did not have any formal communications or contact with the campaign other than policy papers given to Steve Bannon, attending some fundraisers and a "yard sign".

When asked by Al Jazeera's Hasan about why he didn't then disclose the August 2016 Trump Tower meeting, Prince initially said he "disclosed any meetings, the very, very few" he had.

When pressed further by Hasan, Prince said, "I don't believe I was asked that question."

Prince later contradicted himself, saying he did tell the panel about the meeting. When asked to explain why it was not in the transcript, Prince said, "I don't know if they got the transcript wrong."

He later also said that "not all of the discussion that day was transcribed".

He added that he "certainly" remembers discussing the meeting with "investigators".

A staff member of the House Intelligence Committee told Al Jazeera that Prince was not asked about the August 3, 2016 meeting in Trump Tower during his testimony and any redactions that were made to that testimony were done to protect personally identifiable information.

The Blackwater founder's comments to Hasan is the first time that Prince or anyone else who reportedly attended the meeting has publicly acknowledged it and the first indication that it could have been about Iran policy. At the time, Nader was reportedly seeking to advance a clandestine plan to destabilise Iran through the use of private military contractors.

Since coming to office, Trump has taken a hawkish stance towards Iran, pulling out of the nuclear deal in 2018 and blaming the country for the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS). Last month in Warsaw, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told the conference, "You can't achieve stability in the Middle East without confronting Iran". US National Security Advisor John Bolton has also advocated for regime change in the country.

In Head to Head’s wide-ranging interview with Prince, the Blackwater founder also responds to questions about his meeting in the Seychelles with a Russian businessman close to the Kremlin and discusses the private security company’s history during the Iraq War, including the Nisour Square massacre, as well as his proposal for ending the war in Afghanistan.

Blackwater's Erik Prince: Iraq, privatising wars, and Trump will air March 8, 2019 at 20:00 GMT and be repeated on March 9 at 12:00GMT, March 10 at 01:00 GMT and March 11 at 06:00 GMT. ... 01138.html

Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
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Don’t forget that.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Sat Mar 09, 2019 9:40 am


We're going to eventually learn that the woman who started Kraft's massage parlour has a role in all the Chinese trademarks Ivanka keeps getting, aren't we?

David Rothkopf

If the president is letting a Chinese madam sell access at Mar-a-Lago to Chinese business people while his friends are getting serviced at businesses she started, he is exposing himself and the country to massive blackmail risk. Surely the IC and FBI are aware of this.

Cindy Yang, the founder of the Florida spa where Bob Kraft was busted for soliciting prostitution, wasn’t just posing for selfies with members of trumpworld. She's been selling Chinese business executives access to trump and his family at Mar-a-Lago

A Florida Massage Parlor Owner Has Been Selling Chinese Execs Access to Trump at Mar-a-Lago

The strange, swampy saga of Trump donor Li Yang.

MARCH 9, 2019 6:26 AM

The latest Trump political donor to draw controversy is Li Yang, a 45-year-old Florida entrepreneur from China who founded a chain of spas and massage parlors that included the one where New England Patriots owner Bob Kraft was recently busted for soliciting prostitution. She made the news this week when the Miami Herald reported that last month she had attended a Super Bowl viewing party at Donald Trump’s West Palm Beach golf club and had snapped a selfie with the president during the event. Though Yang no longer owns the spa Kraft allegedly visited, the newspaper noted that other massage parlors her family runs have “gained a reputation for offering sexual services.” (She told the newspaper she has never violated the law.) Beyond this sordid tale, there is another angle to the strange story of Yang: She runs an investment business that has offered to sell Chinese clients access to Trump and his family. And a website for the business—which includes numerous photos of Yang and her purported clients hobnobbing at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s private club in Palm Beach—suggests she had some success in doing so.

Yang, who goes by Cindy, and her husband, Zubin Gong, started GY US Investments LLC in 2017. The company describes itself on its website, which is mostly in Chinese, as an “international business consulting firm that provides public relations services to assist businesses in America to establish and expand their brand image in the modern Chinese marketplace.” But the firm notes that its services also address clients looking to make high-level connections in the United States. On a page displaying a photo of Mar-a-Lago, Yang’s company says its “activities for clients” have included providing them “the opportunity to interact with the president, the [American] Minister of Commerce and other political figures.” The company boasts it has “arranged taking photos with the President” and suggests it can set up a “White House and Capitol Hill Dinner.” (The same day the Herald story about Yang broke, the website stopped functioning.)

The short bio of Yang on the website, identifying her as the founder and CEO of GY US Investments, shows her in a photo with Trump bearing his signature. It says she has been “settled in the United States for more than 20 years” and is a member of the “Presidential Fundraising Committee.” According to the Herald, Yang is a registered Republican, and since 2017 she and her relatives have donated more than $42,000 to a Trump political action committee and more than $16,000 to Trump’s campaign. Her Facebook page, which was taken offline on Friday, was loaded with photos of her posing with GOP notables: Donald Trump Jr., Rep. Matt Gaetz or Florida, Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, among others.

On a page displaying a photo of Mar-a-Lago, Yang’s company says its “activities for clients” have included providing them “the opportunity to interact with the president, the [American] Minister of Commerce and other political figures.”
The GY US Investments website lists upcoming events at Mar-a-Lago at which Yang’s clients presumably can mingle with Trump or members of his family. This includes something called the International Leaders Elite Forum, where Trump’s sister, Elizabeth Trump Grau, will supposedly be the featured speaker. Attendees, the site says, will include “Chinese elites from various countries, including the US states, as well as elite leaders from Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, Australia, Europe and other countries and regions.” Another event for which Yang’s firm says it can provide access is Trump’s annual New Year’s celebration at Mar-a-Lago. Elsewhere on the website, the firm boasts that “GY Company arranged a number of guests to attend the 2019 New Year’s Eve dinner. All the guests took photos with” members of Trump’s family. This page displays photos of Chinese executives and a Chinese movie star with Donald Trump Jr., suggesting that these pics were arranged by the company, and also includes a photo of Yang with Elizabeth Trump Grau.

A flier posted on GY US Investments’ website publicizing an upcoming event at Mar-A-Lago featuring the president’s sister, Elizabeth Trump Grau.
Among the Chinese executives who attended that New Year’s event was Huachu Tang, the owner of an electric car company. Tang told Yahoo Finance that he flew 17 hours from Xi’an, China, with his family and an assistant in hopes of meeting with Trump at the party. Though he reportedly speaks almost no English, Tang said he hoped to use a Trump connection to build up his company’s brand before eventually taking it public on the New York Stock Exchange. Trump, however, canceled his trip to Mar-a-Lago due to the government shutdown. Tang and his wife managed to pose for pictures with Trump Jr., Eric Trump, and Trump Grau. Tang told Yahoo that he received admission to the New Year’s party through a package offered by a public relations agency—perhaps Yang’s firm. According to Yahoo, the company Tang used declined to reveal the price of the package, citing the confidentiality of the contract.


The GY US Investments website also posted photos of Yang at a White House celebration of the “Asian New Year” in 2018 and at a Chinese New Year dinner celebration that purportedly included Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Transportation Secretary Chao. The firm says it invited 10 guests to the Chinese New Year event and the website shows several of them posing with Chao.

According to the website, the company has offices in Miami; Washington, DC; and Wuhan, China, and is preparing to open an office in Beijing. But the address of its office in the Washington area matches the location of a UPS store.

Yang and her business partners listed on the GY US Investments’ website could not be reached for comment. No one responded to messages left at the number for GY US Investments. A man who answered a phone number listed for Yang hung up. A man who picked up the phone at a number listed for the company’s Washington-area office said, “My English isn’t good,” and hung up. White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders and Trump Grau did not respond to requests for comment.

The overall message conveyed by the GY US Investments website seems clear: hire Yang’s company and she can get you close to Trump and his government—at Mar-a-Lago and in Washington. If the posted photos are authentic, she has been able to get Chinese clients at least into the Trump circle for a quick pic. They are a sign that this Chinese immigrant and Trump donor has used her contacts to go from massaging clients to massaging influence. ... ar-a-lago/



emptywheel Retweeted Aaron Maté
Aaron says the Trump Tower deal he says doesn't exist in fact actually does exist.

It must be hard living in his dream world.

Aaron: "I mean, the Trump Tower deal must not have existed bc Michael Cohen got on the phone with Dmitry Peskov and said he'd be willing to work with a sanctioned bank to make it happen and the next day Putin's office called."

Aaron: And sure, Michael Cohen started making travel plans THE MINUTE that June 9 meeting I keep flubbing ended for a possible meeting with Vlad Putin but that's just a giant COINKYDINK bc Rob Goldstone is a music promoter.

Aaron: I mean, sure, Don Jr said, 'We'll revisit sanctions' and at that minute the Trump Tower deal moved to the next step but that's all just music promoter shit.

Aaron: The Russians used a concert promoter to get to Uday Failson so nothing untoward could have happened.

This is one of Aaron's better gimmicks.

There is a sworn public record, and instead he chooses to repeat Dmitry Peskov's evolving claims that always magically coincided w/Trump cover story.

That is, he PREFERS incosistent RU propaganda to sworn court record.




Aaron points to Cohen complaining In December rather than booking plane tickets the minute the June 9 Trump Tower meeting breaks. What a bozo. ... 4744087557

There are 10 different investigations of Trump world beyond Mueller's
Last edited by seemslikeadream on Sat Mar 09, 2019 7:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Sat Mar 09, 2019 3:38 pm

That’s what I learned last night when I walked Aaron Maté through the process


March 9, 2019/0 Comments/in 2016 Presidential Election, Mueller Probe /by empty wheel

Donald J. Trump, self-proclaimed master of the deal, just got his ass handed to him in a high stakes nuclear negotiation by Kim Jong-Un, at a time when Trump had the full power of the United States and hundreds of experts available to help him.

And yet Russian conspiracy denialists believe that any conspiracy between said deal-maker and Vladimir Putin must show evidence that Trump came away with a big win over anything but the 2016 election. They believe this, even though Trump made any such deal at a time when he was desperate to avoid a humiliating loss, and relying on negotiators like his feckless son Don Jr, his attention-craving personal lawyer Michael Cohen, and his financially exposed campaign manager Paul Manafort.

That’s what I learned last night when I walked Aaron Maté through the process of first claiming the Trump Tower deal went nowhere because Cohen and Felix Sater disagreed in December 2015, then admitting that Cohen and Sater were still at it in May and June. By the end, Maté was dismissing Rudy Giuliani’s admission that the deal went through the election (which is itself a limited hangout designed to hide that a Trump Tower deal was pursued in two different forms after the election, as well as abundant evidence that other financial payoffs were made) by pointing to Dmitry Peskov’s stories, which have changed right along with Michael Cohen’s evolving lies.

Because there’s no shiny tower in Moscow with Trump’s name on it, Maté appears to believe, it is proof that when Don Jr took a meeting in June 2016 at which he (according to the sworn testimony of four people who attended) committed to revisit Magnitsky sanctions if his dad got elected, the possibility of a $300 million payoff didn’t factor in to Junior’s willingness to sign away American policy considerations on behalf of his father.

That’s not how criminal conspiracy law works.

If you sign up for a deal and take steps to make good on it — as Don Jr did on June 9, 2016 and Paul Manafort appears to have on August 2, 2016 and Mike Flynn appears to have, on Trump’s behalf, on December 29, 2016 — then it doesn’t matter if the partner to that deal fucks you over later in the process. And, after all, the Russians did continue to supply Trump with a steady supply of dirt on Hillary Clinton all through the election. They got Trump elected, or at least did what they could to help, even if that payoff wasn’t the one Trump was most interested in.

Do you think Oleg Deripaska, a key player in both the deal-making and likely in the cover-up of it, gives a shit if Paul Manafort — who had screwed Deripaska over years earlier — had his life ruined as part of the process of compromising a President and getting sanctions relief? My suspicion is we’ll learn that Deripaska magnified Manafort’s hurt, once he had gotten him to compromise himself and the campaign.

Do you think Putin really cares whether Trump — to say nothing of the United States — benefits from the stupid choices Trump made during the election? Putin — a far better “deal” maker than Trump — got a win-win either way: Either Trump succeeded in compromising America’s rule of law in an effort to squelch any investigation into what happened, robbing the United States of the claim to idealism that so irks the master kleptocrat, Putin, or Trump would spend his Administration desperately trying to find a way out, all the while Putin connives Trump into dismantling the alliances that keep Russia in check.

And, too, Putin’s election year operation exacerbated the polarization between Democrats and Republicans such that most Republicans and a goodly number of Democrats have been unable to step back and say, holy shit, this country got attacked and we need to come together to do something about it. Trump’s win got Republicans to fear Trump’s base so much that they care more about those fevered hordes than doing what is right for this country. And Democrats rightly want to punish Trump for cheating, but haven’t thought about what a least-damaging off-ramp for that cheater might look like.

Putin doesn’t care if Trump benefits from all this — though he is happy to keep toying with Trump like a cat plays before he eviscerates his mouse. He cares about whether he and his cronies win. And there are multiple ways for him to get a win out of this, whether or not Trump manages to eek any kind of real payoff past the election.

And let’s be honest, Putin isn’t the only one playing this game. Certainly, Mohammed bin Salman feels the same way, even if his record of ruthless dealmaking is shorter and sloppier than Putin’s. The truth is that Donald Trump and Jared Kushner are easy marks for a whole range of skilled operators willing to stroke their egos and dangle loot, and over and over again they’ve let themselves be bested in foreign policy negotiations, to the detriment of the interests of the United States. That they are so bad at deal making in no way disproves their culpability.

There is no Trump Tower in Moscow. But there never had to be. All that was needed was the promise of a ridiculously lucrative narcissism-stroking deal for the Trump family to agree to shit that would hurt this country. And all the evidence suggests that they did, and continue to do so. ... -quo-deal/


Folks: On Erik Prince ... yes, he pretty clearly lied to Congress. But Mueller did not specifically ask for his transcript in the way he did Stone's. Yes, he has them now, but I suspect if he's in trouble it's not for just lying.

18 November 2016

We’re heading into dark times. This is how to be your own light in the Age of Trump

Flyover Country Former Correspondent

My fellow Americans, I have a favor to ask you.

Today is November 18, 2016. I want you to write about who you are, what you have experienced, and what you have endured.

Write down what you value; what standards you hold for yourself and for others. Write about your dreams for the future and your hopes for your children. Write about the struggle of your ancestors and how the hardship they overcame shaped the person you are today.

Write your biography, write down your memories. Because if you do not do it now, you may forget.

Write a list of things you would never do. Because it is possible that in the next year, you will do them.

Write a list of things you would never believe. Because it is possible that in the next year, you will either believe them or be forced to say you believe them.

A president-elect who wants to strip our country down for parts

It is increasingly clear, as Donald Trump appoints his cabinet of white supremacists and war-mongers, as hate crimes rise,
More on the surge in hate crime can be found here. as the institutions
Read this non-partisan plea to save our democratic institutions. that are supposed to protect us cower, as international norms
Read more in this piece on international law in the Age of Trump. are shattered, that his ascendency to power is not normal.
You can read Joshua Foust’s article "This Is Not Normal" here.

This is an American authoritarian kleptocracy, backed by millionaire white nationalists both in the United States and abroad, meant to strip our country down for parts, often using ethnic violence to do so.

This is not a win for anyone except them. This is a moral loss and a dangerous threat for everyone in the United States, and by extension, everyone abroad.

I have been studying authoritarian states for over a decade, and I would never exaggerate the severity of this threat. Others who study or have lived in authoritarian states have come to the same conclusion as me.

And the plight is beyond party politics: it is not a matter of having a president-elect whom many dislike, but having a president-elect whose explicit goal is to destroy the nation.

None of us deserves what’s coming

I am writing this not for those who oppose him, but for those who support him, because Trump and his backers are going to hurt you too.

I live in Missouri, now a bright red state, alongside you. I have faced the same economic misery as you, struggling to stay afloat since the recession, which never ended though many falsely claimed it did. I have the same anxiety over crime and racial tension and corrupt leadership as you. I am an independent, not a Democrat or a Republican, because I am as disappointed in political parties as you.

I am writing down my own good memories, and some of them are with you. I have walked beside you in our state parks, along our flowing rivers, and in our cities and small towns. I have talked and laughed with you in St. Louis, in Cape Girardeau, in Hannibal, in the Ozarks, and in the devastated rural areas in between, while surrounded by your signs and hats proclaiming support for Donald Trump. You do not deserve what is going to happen to you, and I do not deserve what is going to happen to me, because there is absolutely no one in the world who deserves what may be coming.

He told us his plans all along, though most chose to downplay or deny them
You can look to the president-elect himself for a vision of what is to come. He has told you his plans all along, though most chose to downplay or deny them. You can even look back to before his candidacy, when in February 2014, he went on Fox News to defend Russia. Why a reality TV host was on Fox News defending Russia is its own story, but here is what he said
Listen to what Trump said already back in 2014. about his desired outcome for the United States:

“You know what solves it? When the economy crashes, when the country goes to total hell and everything is a disaster. Then you’ll have a [chuckles], you know, you’ll have riots to go back to where we used to be when we were great.”

This is what “Make America Great Again” means to Donald Trump. It is how he has operated his businesses, taking advantage of economic disasters like the housing market crash
Read more on Trump being "excited" about the crash. for personal gain. It is why, during a long and painful recession, he made “You’re fired” a national catchphrase, because he understands that sometimes it feels good to know that the person getting fired, for once, is not you. He said he could shoot someone on 5th Avenue
Read more about Trump’s "shoot somebody" remarks here. and people would still vote for him, and he said he could grab women
Read the full transcript of Trump’s taped comments at the New York Times. “by the pussy” because “When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.”

The system is rigged in his favor

He is right about that last part. No one holds Trump accountable, because he is exactly what he claimed to be railing against: an elite billionaire with no concern for the average person, a kleptocrat who enjoys taunting people less powerful than him with threats. When you have that kind of money, which Trump was given in birth and further gained through fraud, there are few limitations to the ways you can hurt people.

He is right that the system is rigged: it is rigged in his favor. And now it is rigged against you, unless we find a way to stop it.

I have been to the Trump rallies, not as a journalist, but as an observer in the crowd. I talked with you and you told me your hopes for the country under him, how you felt you were watching history being made, how you thought he was going to stick it to those who have been screwing us. I know the loyalty he inspires. I know it is unearned, because he lied.

Trump’s vision for the United States is echoed in that of his chief strategist, Steve Bannon, a man who even the very right-wing Glenn Beck describes as a dangerous, sociopathic racist. In 2016, a reporter from the Daily Beast recalled this conversation with Bannon:
Read more about Bannon here.

“I’m a Leninist,” Bannon proudly proclaimed.

Shocked, I asked him what he meant.

“Lenin,” he answered, “wanted to destroy the state, and that’s my goal too. I want to bring everything crashing down, and destroy all of today’s establishment.”

The days of free speech may soon end

This mirrors Trump’s own goals of destroying the United States, and it mirrors the intentions of dictators everywhere, who see people as objects to be manipulated and discarded, and not as real human beings. I have seen dictatorships firsthand in the former Soviet Union. I have friends who were imprisoned for expressing even the slightest criticism of the state, friends who had their businesses shaken down by the government and were left bankrupt, and friends whose family members were murdered by state security services.

I have worked, often unpaid, as an expert witness in political asylum cases for people from authoritarian states, because I will do anything to help people in this terrible position. The brutality they have endured, the fear of the state that prevents them from making independent choices, is something difficult for American minds to fathom.

The mainstream media has promoted him ceaselessly and are now rationalizing and normalizing Trump’s most extreme policies
We are a deeply flawed nation, and those who are minorities or poor have faced state-sanctioned cruelty as well as limited opportunities. But it is simply not the same as authoritarianism.

Though our speech is often challenged, we can still speak. We can debate each other and come up with ways to improve our country. We can scream at each other and mock each other and tell each other our political choices are terrible. You will miss those days, they may end soon.

You may be wondering why I am writing a letter to Americans in a Dutch news outlet. It is because I do not trust the US outlets to remain free, and believe that many are already compromised. The mainstream media who Trump proclaims to hate are actually his best friend. They have been all along, promoting him ceaselessly, and they are now rationalizing and normalizing his most extreme policies. Trump tells you to boycott CNN, but CNN’s boss always had a framed Trump tweet on the wall.

For what it’s worth, Trump supporters, I have always supported your boycott of CNN. But this common ground is grim.

Preparing to live like a nation of dissidents

It is possible that I will end up living like the dissidents who I defended from foreign dictatorships for so long. I will talk in coded terms, as I have started to do already. Did you think it was a coincidence that I published an article about Elijah Lovejoy,
Read my piece on Lovejoy and courage at De Correspondent. a journalist who sought freedom for all and was killed by St. Louis mobs, right before the election? I will try to continue to publish in foreign outlets. I will rearrange my life so I can fight this fight, because I am fighting for my country, and I never give up on my country or on my countrymen.

But I need you to fight too, in the way that matters most, which is inside. Authoritarianism is not merely a matter of state control, it is something that eats away at who you are. It makes you afraid, and fear can make you cruel. It compels you to conform and to comply and accept things that you would never accept, to do things you never thought you would do.

You do it because everyone else is doing it, because the institutions you trust are doing it and telling you to do it, because you are afraid of what will happen if you do not do it, and because the voice in your head crying out that something is wrong grows fainter and fainter until it dies.

We are heading into dark times, and you need to be your own light. Do not accept brutality and cruelty as normal even if it is sanctioned
That voice is your conscience, your morals, your individuality. No one can take that from you unless you let them. They can take everything from you in material terms – your house, your job, your ability to speak and move freely. They cannot take away who you truly are. They can never truly know you, and that is your power.

But to protect and wield this power, you need to know yourself – right now, before their methods permeate, before you accept the obscene and unthinkable as normal.

My heart breaks for the United States of America. It breaks for those who think they are my enemies as much as it does for my friends. You still have your freedom, so use it. There are many groups organizing for both resistance and subsistence, but we are heading into dark times, and you need to be your own light. Do not accept brutality and cruelty as normal even if it is sanctioned. Protect the vulnerable and encourage the afraid. If you are brave, stand up for others. If you cannot be brave – and it is often hard to be brave – be kind.

But most of all, never lose sight of who you are and what you value. If you find yourself doing something that feels questionable or wrong a few months or years from now, find that essay you wrote on who you are and read it. Ask if that version of yourself would have done the same thing.

And if the answer is no? Don’t do it. ... 2-e23ea1a6

trump and Jeff Sessions abused their power by attempting to open what they knew was a baseless criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton for political reasons. This is impeachable


Well golly I wonder if this is why Big Dick Toilet Salesman left DOJ in such a hurry.

American Oversight

NEW: Jeff Sessions caved to Trump's authoritarian demands. We obtained the signed directive from Sessions to a federal prosecutor ordering a wide-ranging investigation of Hillary Clinton.


American Oversight

This document, Sessions’ signed order to implement Trump's authoritarian call to investigate Clinton, has not been made public until now. DOJ claimed it did not exist. Our statement:

Here's the email from Matthew Whitaker to prosecutor John Huber, attaching Sessions' directive to investigate issues related to Clinton. DOJ had filed a sworn statement that officials - including Whitaker and Huber - claimed no written directives existed.


In November 2017, DOJ announced it had assigned senior prosecutors to look into issues raised by House Republicans, who had been demanding the appointment of a 2nd special counsel to investigate Clinton. We filed FOIAs and a lawsuit to uncover the facts. ... ranium-one

A year after our FOIA, DOJ told the court under penalty of perjury that no records of written directives to Huber existed. Then during Matthew Whitaker's last week at DOJ, they suddenly found the signed directive--in Whitaker’s email.


You don't exactly "forget" about a signed directive to investigate Hillary Clinton. We’re concerned that DOJ's previous denial of this letter's existence looks a lot like a deliberate attempt to conceal how far they went to implement President Trump's authoritarian demands.

Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby BenDhyan » Mon Mar 11, 2019 11:42 pm she puts America first, does not want division...nice soul...

Nancy Pelosi: 'I'm not for impeachment,' slams Trump as 'not worth it'

By Alex Rogers, CNN Updated 0041 GMT (0841 HKT) March 12, 2019

(CNN)House Speaker Nancy Pelosi does not currently support impeaching President Donald Trump despite thinking that he's unfit for the country's highest office, according to a Washington Post magazine interview published Monday.

"I'm not for impeachment," Pelosi said. "This is news. I'm going to give you some news right now because I haven't said this to any press person before. But since you asked, and I've been thinking about this: Impeachment is so divisive to the country that unless there's something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, I don't think we should go down that path, because it divides the country. And he's just not worth it."

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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby RocketMan » Tue Mar 12, 2019 3:21 am

Aaaaaand impeachment is OFF THE TABLE. It should be her motto. Tired, calcified establishment hack.

This reveals Russiagate and all the rest of Never Trumping as the performative hogwash that it is. No one in any position of power wants to open the system up for any kind of truly democratic challenge that would leverage any fractures in the edifice.

They're counting down the clock, hoping Biden will come through and business as usual will resume. These cynical bastards.

BenDhyan » Tue Mar 12, 2019 6:42 am she puts America first, does not want division...nice soul...

Nancy Pelosi: 'I'm not for impeachment,' slams Trump as 'not worth it'

By Alex Rogers, CNN Updated 0041 GMT (0841 HKT) March 12, 2019

(CNN)House Speaker Nancy Pelosi does not currently support impeaching President Donald Trump despite thinking that he's unfit for the country's highest office, according to a Washington Post magazine interview published Monday.

"I'm not for impeachment," Pelosi said. "This is news. I'm going to give you some news right now because I haven't said this to any press person before. But since you asked, and I've been thinking about this: Impeachment is so divisive to the country that unless there's something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, I don't think we should go down that path, because it divides the country. And he's just not worth it."

-I don't like hoodlums.
-That's just a word, Marlowe. We have that kind of world. Two wars gave it to us and we are going to keep it.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby BenDhyan » Tue Mar 12, 2019 3:51 am

^ That, and I guess she may have heard the Mueller report about to be released is a let Russia collusion.
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Re: Trumpublicons: Foreign Influence/Grifting in '16 US Elec

Postby seemslikeadream » Tue Mar 12, 2019 7:41 am

I'm not sure how hanging out with a human/sex trafficker who sells access to you for Chinese businesses helps trump make America great again.

Everything to Know About the Spa Founder Selling Access to Trump

The Massage Parlor Owner Peddling Access to Trump Has Ties to Chinese Government-Linked Groups

A Florida Massage Parlor Owner Has Been Selling Chinese Execs Access to Trump at Mar-a-Lago

From Steele dossier


Unpardonable bank fraud and other financial shenanigans at the state level?

Felony. Bank. Fraud.

This is where Weiselberg decides if he wants to die in jail.

Lawyers for Manafort’s former partner, Rick Gates, and trump’s former national security advisor, Michael Flynn, will give status updates on their respective cases.

Gates, who testified against his former business partner Manafort at trial last summer and has cooperated extensively with the special counsel, will file a joint status report with Mueller on Friday.

Manafort, could receive more than a decade in cumulative prison time

And trump’s first national security advisor, Michael Flynn, will give a status update to the judge who had previously accused him of arguably selling out his own country.

The New York AG’s office has issued subpoenas to Deutsche Bank and Investors Bank for records relating to the financing of 4 major Trump Organization projects and a failed effort to buy the Buffalo Bills

New York Attorney General Opens Investigation of Trump Projects
The office of Attorney General Letitia James of New York issued a subpoena to Deutsche Bank on Monday, opening a new front in the scrutiny of its relationship with President Trump.
Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg

The office of Attorney General Letitia James of New York issued a subpoena to Deutsche Bank on Monday, opening a new front in the scrutiny of its relationship with President Trump.CreditCreditVictor J. Blue/Bloomberg
By William K. Rashbaum and Danny Hakim
March 11, 2019

The New York attorney general’s office late on Monday issued subpoenas to Deutsche Bank and Investors Bank for records relating to the financing of four major Trump Organization projects and a failed effort to buy the Buffalo Bills of the National Football League in 2014, according to a person briefed on the subpoenas.

The inquiry opens a new front in the scrutiny of Deutsche Bank, one of the few lenders willing to do business with Donald J. Trump in recent years. The bank is already the subject of two congressional investigations and was examined last year by New York banking regulators, who took no action.

The new inquiry, by the office of the attorney general, Letitia James, was prompted by the congressional testimony last month of Michael D. Cohen, President Trump’s former lawyer and fixer, the person briefed on the subpoenas said. Mr. Cohen testified under oath that Mr. Trump had inflated his assets in financial statements, and Mr. Cohen provided copies of statements he said had been submitted to Deutsche Bank.

The inquiry by Ms. James’s office is a civil investigation, not a criminal one, although its focus and scope were unclear. The attorney general has broad authority under state law to investigate fraud and can fine — or in extreme cases, go to court to try to dissolve — a business that is found to have engaged in repeated illegality.

The request to Deutsche Bank sought loan applications, mortgages, lines of credit and other financing transactions in connection with the Trump International Hotel in Washington; the Trump National Doral outside Miami; and the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago, the person said.

Investigators also requested records connected to an unsuccessful effort to buy the Bills, the person said. Mr. Trump gave Deutsche Bank bare-bones personal financial statements in 2014 when he planned to make a bid for the team, The New York Times has reported. The deal fell through when the team was sold to a rival bidder for $1.4 billion.

Mr. Trump worked with a small United States-based unit of Deutsche Bank that serves ultra-wealthy people. The unit lent Mr. Trump more than $100 million in 2012 to pay for the Doral golf resort and $170 million in 2015 to transform the Old Post Office Building in Washington into a luxury hotel.

New Jersey-based Investors Bank was subpoenaed for records relating to Trump Park Avenue, a project it had backed.

Deutsche Bank and Investors Bank declined to comment. The Trump Organization did not respond to requests for comment.

The subpoenas are a culmination of months of threats from Ms. James that she would aggressively investigate Mr. Trump. In August, referring to the investigation by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, into Russian interference in the 2016 election, she said “the president of the United States has to worry about three things: Mueller, Cohen, and Tish James.”

In her victory speech on the night she was elected in November, she said, “I will be shining a bright light into every dark corner of his real estate dealings, and every dealing, demanding truthfulness at every turn.” The next month, before taking office, she told NBC that “we will use every area of the law to investigate President Trump and his business transactions and that of his family.”

Mr. Trump has a rich recent history of grievances against the New York attorney general’s office. Before former Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman resigned amid allegations of assault and abuse against women, he pursued cases against the Trump Foundation and Trump University. Mr. Trump has referred to him as “sleazebag AG Eric Schneiderman” and “Shady Eric.” He also assailed Mr. Schneiderman’s temporary successor, Barbara D. Underwood, and has referred to Ms. James as “yet another AG” who “openly campaigned on a GET TRUMP agenda.”

“Will never be treated fairly by these people — a total double standard of ‘justice,’” he added on Twitter.

In Congress, the House Intelligence Committee has been exploring real estate transactions related to Russia and other foreign interests, including Deutsche Bank loans to the Trump Organization. ... 3YDGQI388x

Chart: Robert Mueller’s Special Counsel’s Office and Other Trump-Russia Cases
Information on each case and legal filing links below.

Wendy SiegelmanFollow
Sep 16, 2018
Note: Data updated as of March 11, 2019

Chart above includes cases from the Special Counsel’s Office or related cases of high profile figures in the Trump-Russia investigation. It does not include other cases that may turn out to be related, such as U.S. cases against Russian hackers, or U.S. or international money laundering cases (e.g. Khrapunovs, 1MDB), etc. Below is summary information and links to filing docs for cases included in the chart.
Trump-Russia related cases
U.S. v. Mariia Butina aka Maria Butina
(Case 1:18-cr-00218-TSC, District of Columbia)
U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia
On July 16, 2018, Russian national Mariia/Maria Butina was charged with conspiracy to act as an agent of the Russian Federation within the United States without prior notification to the Attorney General. The investigation was conducted by the FBI’s Washington Field Office. The case is being prosecuted by the National Security Section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the National Security Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.
Justice Department Announcement
Criminal Complaint
Affidavit in Support of Criminal Complaint
Government Memorandum in Support of Pretrial Detention (7/18/18)
Government Opposition to Defendant’s Motion for Bond Review (9/7/18)
U.S. v. Michael Cohen
(Case 1:18-cr-00602-WHP, Southern District of New York)
U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY)
Michael Cohen pleaded guilty on August 21, 2018 to evasion of personal income tax, making false statements to financial institutions, willfully causing an unlawful corporate contribution, making an excessive campaign contribution. This case is being handled by the Office’s Public Corruption Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Andrea M. Griswold, Rachel Maimin, Thomas McKay, and Nicolas Roos are in charge of the prosecution.
Department of Justice Announcement
Charging Documents
Plea Deal
Transcript of the court proceeding
U.S. v. W. Samuel Patten
(Case 1:18-cr-00260-ABJ, District of Columbia)
U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia and the National Security Division of the U.S. Department of Justice
On August 31, 2018 Samuel Patten pleaded guilty to violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act and acting as an agent of a foreign principal for the Opposition Bloc (a Ukrainian political party).
Criminal Information
Plea Deal
U.S. v. Natalya Vladimirovna Veselnitskaya
(Case: 1:18-cr-904, Southern District of New York)
U.S. v. Paul Erickson
(Case: 4:19-cr-40015-LLP, District of South Dakota Southern Division)
U.S. v. Elena Alekseevna Khusyaynova
(Case: 1 :18-MJ-464, Eastern District of Virginia)
Criminal Complaint
U.S. v. Bijan Rafiekian and Kamil Ekim Alptekin
(Case: 1:18-cr-00457-AJT, Eastern District of Virginia)
Robert Mueller’s Special Counsel’s Office Cases
All of the information in the SCO Mueller section below is directly from the Special Counsel’s Office website.
U.S. v. Paul J. Manafort, Jr.
(1:17-cr-201, District of Columbia)
Paul J. Manafort, Jr., of Alexandria, Va., pleaded guilty on Sept. 14, 2018 to a superseding criminal information filed today in the District of Columbia, which includes conspiracy against the United States (conspiracy to commit money laundering, tax fraud, failing to file Foreign Bank Account Reports and Violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act, and lying and misrepresenting to the Department of Justice) and conspiracy to obstruct justice (witness tampering). A status report with regard to sentencing was scheduled for Nov. 16, 2018.
Superseding Criminal Information
Plea Agreement
Statement of the Offense
U.S. v. Konstantin Kilimnik
(1:17-cr-201, District of Columbia)
A federal grand jury in the District of Columbia returned a third superseding indictment on June 8, 2018, against Konstantin Kilimnik, of Moscow, Russia. Kilimnik is charged with conspiracy to obstruct justice and obstruction of justice.
Third Superseding Indictment
U.S. v. Richard W. Gates III
(1:17-cr-201, District of Columbia)
Richard W. Gates III of Richmond, Va., pleaded guilty on Feb. 23, 2018, to a superseding criminal information that includes: count one of the indictment, which charges conspiracy against the United States, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 371 (which includes conspiracy to violate 26 U.S.C. 7206(1), 31 U.S.C. 5312 and 5322(b), and 22 U.S.C. 612, 618(a)(1), and 618(a)(2)), and a charge of making false statements to the Special Counsel’s Office and FBI agents, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1001.
Superseding Criminal Information
Plea Agreement
Statement of the Offense
U.S. v. Paul J. Manafort, Jr., and Richard W. Gates III
(1:18-cr-83, Eastern District of Virginia)
Paul J. Manafort, Jr., of Alexandria, Va., and Richard W. Gates III, of Richmond, Va., were indicted by a federal grand jury on Feb. 22, 2018, in the Eastern District of Virginia. The indictment contains 32 counts: 16 counts related to false individual income tax returns, seven counts of failure to file reports of foreign bank and financial accounts, five counts of bank fraud conspiracy, and four counts of bank fraud. On March 1, 2018, the court granted a motion to dismiss without prejudice the charges against Gates, following his guilty plea in a related case in the District of Columbia (1:17-cr-201). On Aug. 21, 2018, a federal jury found Manafort guilty on eight counts: counts 1–5, subscribing to a false individual income tax return for tax years 2010–2014; count 12, failure to file reports of foreign bank and financial accounts for year 2012; count 25, bank fraud; and count 27, bank fraud. The court declared a mistrial on 10 counts (counts 11, 13–14, 24, 26, 28–32). As part of his plea agreement on Sept. 14, 2018, Manafort admitted his guilt of the remaining counts against him in this case.
U.S. v. Viktor Borisovich Netyksho, et al
(Case 1:18-cr-215, District of Columbia)
A federal grand jury in the District of Columbia returned an indictment on July 13, 2018, against 12 Russian nationals for their alleged roles in computer hacking conspiracies aimed at interfering in the 2016 U.S. elections. The indictment charges 11 of the defendants with conspiracy to commit computer crimes, eight counts of aggravated identity theft, and conspiracy to launder money. Two defendants are charged with a separate conspiracy to commit computer crimes.
U.S. v. Alex van der Zwaan
(Case 1:18-cr-31, District of Columbia)
Alex van der Zwaan, of London, pleaded guilty on Feb. 20, 2018, to making false statements to FBI agents, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1001. Van der Zwaan was sentenced on April 3, 2018, to serve 30 days in prison and pay a $20,000 fine.
Criminal Information
Plea Agreement
Statement of the Offense
U.S. v. Internet Research Agency, et al
(Case 1:18-cr-32, District of Columbia)
A federal grand jury in the District of Columbia returned an indictment on Feb. 16, 2018, against 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities accused of violating U.S. criminal laws in order to interfere with U.S. elections and political processes. The indictment charges all of the defendants with conspiracy to defraud the United States, three defendants with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, and five defendants with aggravated identity theft.
U.S. v. Richard Pinedo, et al
(Case 1:18-cr-24, District of Columbia)
Richard Pinedo, of Santa Paula, Calif., pleaded guilty on Feb. 12, 2018, to identity fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1028.
Criminal Information
Plea Agreement
Statement of Offense
U.S. v. Michael T. Flynn
(Case 1:17-cr-232, District of Columbia)
Lieutenant General Michael T. Flynn (Ret.), of Alexandria, Va., pleaded guilty on Dec. 1, 2017, to making false statements to FBI agents, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1001.
Criminal Information
Plea Agreement
Statement of the Offense
U.S. v. George Papadopoulos
(Case 1:17-cr-182, District of Columbia)
George Papadopoulos, of Chicago, Illinois, pleaded guilty on Oct. 5, 2017, to making false statements to FBI agents, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1001. The case was unsealed on Oct. 30, 2017.
Criminal Information
Plea Agreement
Statement of the Offense
U.S. v. Roger Jason Stone, Jr. (1:19-cr-18, District of Columbia)
Roger Jason Stone, Jr., 66, of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, was arrested in Fort Lauderdale on Jan. 25, 2019, following an indictment by a federal grand jury on Jan. 24, 2019, in the District of Columbia. The indictment, which was unsealed upon arrest, contains seven counts: one count of obstruction of an official proceeding, five counts of false statements, and one count of witness tampering.
U.S. v. Michael Cohen (1:18-cr-850, Southern District of New York)
Michael Cohen of New York, New York, pleaded guilty on Nov. 29, 2018, to making false statements to the U.S. Congress in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1001 (a)(2). Cohen was sentenced on December 12, 2018, to serve two months in prison and pay a $50,000 fine.
Plea Agreement
Criminal Information ... b2b7574e5b
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Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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