In October, two Giuliani associates, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, were arrested on campaign finance violations. Parnas and Fruman helped dig up dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden in Ukraine.
Now, it has been reported that Lev Parnas has finally broken ranks and has agreed to talk with congressional impeachment investigators and has accused Mr. Trump of falsely denying their relationship.
Parnas had previously declined to speak with investigators for Democrat-led impeachment proceedings.
According to The New York Times:
‘But since then, Mr. Parnas has hired new lawyers who contacted the congressional investigators last week to notify them to “direct any future correspondence or communication to us.’
Lawyers also said that Parnas is prepared to comply with a congressional subpoena for his documents and testimony. According to The Times:
‘Mr. Parnas, a Ukrainian-born American citizen who was central to Mr. Giuliani’s efforts to dig up dirt on Mr. Trump’s rivals, could offer Congress a vein of information about the effort in Ukraine.’
Parnas’ attorneys, Joseph A. Bondy and Edward B. MacMahon, Jr., stated:
‘We are willing to comply with the subpoena to the extent that it does not violate any appropriate privilege that Mr. Parnas may properly invoke.’
Parnas decided to turn on the president when he claimed that he did not know him after his arrest. Mr. Bondy said:
‘Mr. Parnas was very upset by President Trump’s plainly false statement that he did not know him.’
The New York Times reported:
‘Mr. Parnas initially remained in Mr. Trump’s camp after House Democrats on Sept. 30 requested documents and testimony from him and Mr. Fruman. The men hired John Dowd, a lawyer who had earlier represented the president at one stage of the investigation by Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel, into Russian interference in the 2016 election.’
Trump had signed off on the initial hiring of Mr. Dowd, and an October 2 email stated:
‘I have discussed the issue of representation with the president. The president consents to allowing your representation of Mr. Parnas and Mr. Furman.’
However, Dowd had remarked in an interview that Trump’s approval was sought “simply as a courtesy to the president” because of the lawyer’s previous work for him.
According to The Times:
‘A person close to Mr. Trump said that the email did not demonstrate that the president knew Mr. Parnas or Mr. Fruman personally but rather knew of them from media reports.’
On October 3, while Dowd was still representing both Giuliani associates, he wrote a letter to the House Intelligence committee suggesting that some of the materials the committee asked them to produce were protected by attorney-client or executive privilege.
Dowd told the Democrats he did not know how long it would take him to review the documents for “privilege.”
The Times reported:
‘Not long afterward, in an indictment unsealed on Oct. 10, federal prosecutors accused Mr. Parnas and Mr. Fruman of illegally routing a $325,000 contribution to a political action committee supporting Mr. Trump through a shell company and funneling campaign contributions from a Russian businessman to other United States politicians to influence them in support of a marijuana venture. They have both pleaded not guilty.’
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