Back in June of 2016 (during Trump’s presidential campaign) a clandestine meeting between three of Trump’s senior campaign members — Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort — and at least five other people, including Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya took place at Trump Tower in New York. Incidentally, this gathering was dubbed the “Trump Tower Meeting” and is now one of the key parts of Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign and their dealings with Russia during the 2016 election.
This past week even more info has come to light, as CNN investigators discovered that the calls Trump Jr. claims he made to his father before that meeting were in fact made to two of his business associates.
And now, adding even more fuel to this fire, today it was discovered that a Russian-born lobbyist who attended that meeting received payments before and after said meeting, totaling half a million dollars.
According to Buzzfeed:
‘Documents reviewed by BuzzFeed News show that Rinat Akhmetshin, a Soviet military officer turned Washington lobbyist, deposited large, round-number amounts of cash in the months preceding and following the meeting, where a Russian lawyer offered senior Trump campaign officials dirt on Hillary Clinton.
‘The lobbyist also received a large payment that bank investigators deemed suspicious from Denis Katsyv, whose company Prevezon Holdings was accused by the US Justice Department of laundering the proceeds of a $230 million Russian tax fraud.’
According to the documents given to Buzzfeed, the combined total payments were made to a non-profit organization called Human Rights Accountability Global Initiative Foundation.
‘Wired by Katsyv and other backers, the payments came two months before the Trump Tower meeting. Investigators at Bank of America, where the foundation held an account, cited the transactions as potential evidence of corruption and bribery in the bid to overturn the sanctions law, and provided them to Treasury, documents show. Mueller is investigating the foundation, Bloomberg reported.
‘Bankers at Wells Fargo said the transactions raised concerns that Akhmetshin may have violated the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) by failing to register as a foreign lobbyist for the network of clients whose money flowed his way. That accusation has been echoed by the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, who in 2017 requestedinformation on Akhmetshin from the Department of Justice, which enforces FARA. Akhmetshin told the Associated Press that the Justice Department had contacted him in April 2017 telling him he should have registered under FARA.’
Though congressional investigators have reportedly requested documents from the Treasury Department, it is not yet clear how deep Mueller will be digging into this particular revelation, and Special Counsel spokesman Peter Carr refused to comment on the matter.
We will keep you updated as we get more information on the subject.
Featured image via YouTube