Two associates of Rudy Giuliani connected to efforts to dig up dirt in Ukraine on Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden have been arrested and indicted on criminal charges for allegedly funneling foreign money into US elections. After a foreign wire transfer of $1.26 million, the pair created a shell company which donated $325000 to "America First", a Trump PAC, to support Pete Sessions and gave Sessions another $20000 direct donation. Sessions then pushed Trump to remove the ambassador to the Ukraine, which he did.
The charges against the men suggest Giuliani's push on Ukraine and President Donald Trump's receptiveness to it had ties to an illegal effort to influence US politics and policy using foreign funds. The indictment involves two people central to the impeachment inquiry in the House.
The two Giuliani-and Trump-linked defendants, Igor Fruman and Lev Parnas, were detained at Dulles International Airport outside of Washington on Wednesday and are scheduled to appear in court in Virginia at 2 p.m. ET Thursday, October 10.
US prosecutors were not intending to unseal the indictment against the Giuliani associates and two others Thursday, according to three US officials. Their hand was forced by an attempt by Fruman and Parnas to leave the country.
In a second scheme, the pair took $1000000 in funding from Russian business man and funneled it to various Republican candidates in 2018. This in an apparent scheme to change the rules for marijuana businesses because they had missed a deadline to apply for a license and needed Nevada legislators to change that deadline for them.
The pair were arrested at Dulles International Airport fleeing the country on one way tickets.
William Barr has been kept up to date on these investigations since February, but took no action.
Photos of the men with Trump in the Whitehouse and at fundraisers at Maralago along with photos of the pair with Trump Jr in California have now been removed from their websites.