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Anti-Putin Financier: Trump Dossier Firm Was Acting On Behalf Of Russia
29 July 2017, 12:33 | Floyd Cook
Russia keeps trolling Trump, saying he may have had meeting with Putin in 'a toilet'
The complaint was filed by USA financier Bill Browder, the founder of Hermitage Capital Management, who spearheaded the Magnitsky Act in 2012 to punish Russian officials suspected of being involved in the death of his account, Sergey Magnitsky.
Democratic Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse said during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Thursday that the president now has the power to remove individuals from the Office of Foreign Asset Control's (OFAC) sanctions list.
He was convicted of tax evasion in absentia by a Moscow district court in 2013, one year after spearheading Congress' passage of the Magnitsky Act - a sanctions package that infuriated Russian President Vladimir Putin, who retaliated by banning Americans from adopting Russian children.
Financier Bill Browder has accused Rep. Dana Rohrabacher of violating federal sanctions by using information provided by Russian officials to try to convince Congress to overturn those sanctions.
Congress was considering expanding the act at the time, and there was an intense lobbying effort by a handful of people with Russian ties on Capitol Hill to have Magnitsky's name removed from it.
"The goal of Putin's regime has been to commit bad crimes in order to get that money, ' Browder continued, under questioning by Sen".
A spokesperson for Whitehouse clarified later that the Senator was not looking to re-write the Magnitsky Act itself, but was examining whether the congressional review provision in the Russian Federation sanctions bill that just passed the House would "encompass" those listed under the Act. Simpson denies that, but he had several meetings with Russians closely tied to the government, including the lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, who met with Donald Trump, Jr. last June.
His lawyer Sergei Magnitsky helped uncover a massive tax-fraud scheme in Russian Federation but was arrested by authorities and died in a Moscow jail. And that's the one thing we can conclude with certainty about what happened in that meeting, ' Browder testified.
Browder responded, "It's absolutely essential that they do, and it's absolutely essential that there's transparency about who people are talking to and about what their interests are". "It affects Putin's money", Browder said.
"I have no direct evidence, but I know how Russian security services behave, and this was a big ask, to repeal a major legislation", Browder told the committee.
".What they were willing to offer in return, I don't know".
Simpson also cut a deal with Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, in which he'll speak with committee members or staffers privately in the way Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, did this week with the Senate and House Intelligence Committees. Lindsey Graham asked, "You believe that Fusion GPS should of registered under FARA, because they were acting on the behalf of the Russians?" In fact, she has denied having anything to do with the Kremlin, but the fact that she once represented interests of the F.S.B.in court may raise numerous eyebrows, especially among USA politicians.
Fusion GPS and Mr. Simpson have been central to the Russian election-meddling saga ever since the salacious anti-Trump dossier, which alleged a yearslong Kremlin conspiracy to elect Donald Trump and included colorful sex stories, was leaked to the press after Mr. Trump's stunning election victory over DemocratHillary Clinton.
The witnesses are three officials from the Justice Department and the FBI, including one - Assistant FBI Director Bill Priestap, who has already appeared in at least one hearing in the Russian Federation imbroglio.
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