Upgraded indictment likely against Giuliani associates

Nellie Chapman
December 5, 2019

A prosecutor said an upgraded indictment is likely in the criminal case against two Rudy Giuliani associates with ties to Ukraine.

"We think a superseding indictment is likely", Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas Zolkind said at a hearing in Manhattan federal court.

Prosecutors from the Southern District of NY also said the investigation into Parnas' activities continued, and that they expected to file a superseding indictment in his case, which now involves three other defendants.

Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman face charges of conspiracy, false statements and falsification of records in connection with two alleged schemes to violate USA election laws. According to prosecutors, they illegally funneled foreign money into US political campaigns, including a $325,000 contribution to the pro-Trump America First political action committee.

Giuliani has not been charged with a crime and has denied wrongdoing.

Federal prosecutors said in court Monday that they expect to allow Lev Parnas to provide evidence for the ongoing impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump. Federal prosecutors say both also participated in a strategy to force the ouster of their then-U.S. ambassador in Ukraine. As previously reported by Law&Crime, Giuliani Partners was contracted and paid $500,000 in 2018 by Fraud Guarantee, the company co-founded by Parnas. Trump has said the impeachment probe is politically motivated and called it a witch hunt.

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Mitsuji Fukumoto, a Peshawar-kai spokesman, told a press conference in Fukuoka the group has "no idea" who carried out the attack. Nakamura first arrived in the region in 1984, when he began working in the Leprosy Ward of a Pakistani hospital.

Current and former USA officials have testified that Giuliani carried out a shadow foreign policy in Ukraine.

While the subpoena issued by the House Intelligence Committee has yet to be made public, Bondy said the document seeks "everything" seized by prosecutors.

Prosecutors have accused Parnas and Fruman of using a shell company to donate $325,000 to a pro-Trump election committee and of raising money for former House Representative Pete Sessions of Texas as part of an effort, ultimately successful, to have the president remove Marie Yovanovitch as ambassador to Ukraine. Prosecutors claim he, Igor Fruman, David Correia, and Andrey Kukushkin variously schemed to hide donations to Republican candidates through straw-donors and allegedly funneled money put up by an unnamed Russian national into the USA electoral process. Giuliani's name didn't come up during the status hearing Monday.

USA law forbids politicians from taking foreign donations. Democrats accuse Trump of abusing his power by pressuring Ukraine to establish an investigation of Joe Biden, his political competition, also Biden's son.

Departing Monday for a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting in London, Trump also criticized the House for pushing forward with proceedings while he was heading overseas, a breach of political decorum that traditionally leaves partisan differences at the water´s edge.

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