Prosecutor: Giuliani’s associate intends to circumvent campaign laws | New York News

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By LARRY NEUMEISTER, Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) – An associate of Rudy Giuliani devised a scheme to funnel $ 1 million in funds from a wealthy Russian financier to the US election knowing full well he was breaking campaign finance laws, he said. a prosecutor said Thursday during oral argument at a federal trial.

The evidence shows that Lev Parnas and a co-defendant, Andrey Kukushkin, used “lies and tricks” to cover up the source of the money, Assistant US Attorney Hagan Scotten told a New York City jury.

Parnas made a series of straw donations despite being “told over and over again that he couldn’t give someone else’s money,” Scotten said.

The accused lied to financier Andrey Muraviev about the amount he was actually giving, the prosecutor said. He also did not keep his promises to the candidates, he added.

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“Put simply, Parnas is scamming everyone,” he said.

Defense lawyers were due to present their arguments later Thursday.

Florida businessman Parnas and Kukushkin have pleaded not guilty to conspiring to use Muraviev’s investment to help politicians they believe could advance their business interests, including an energy company and startups legal issues in the marijuana industry. Giuliani is not charged in the case.

Parnas and another Soviet-born Florida businessman who previously pleaded guilty to the case, Igor Fruman, first caught the attention of reporters and investigators after making large donations through of a legal person to Republican political committees, including a donation of $ 325,000 in 2018 to America First Action, a super PAC supporting Donald Trump.

The couple went on to become intermediaries in Giuliani’s efforts to discredit then-candidate Joe Biden. They put Giuliani in touch with Ukrainian officials as the former New York mayor tried to get that country to open an investigation into the future president’s son, Hunter. Ukrainian tycoons and officials, meanwhile, have enlisted Giuliani’s help in connecting with the Trump administration.

Although Giuliani is not indicted in this case, he is under investigation in New York as to whether he was required to register as an agent of a foreign government for actions he said he had taken in his capacity as private attorney for then President Trump.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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