Fusion GPS Op-ed: Mueller Probing Corruption Connections
Glenn R. Simpson, former Wall Street Journal journalist and co-founder of the research firm Fusion GPS, during his arrival for a scheduled appearance before a closed House Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill on Nov. 14, 2017. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
FBI special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the 2016 election might not have anything to do with the election any longer but instead where his business financing had come from, the Fusion GPS Founders' wrote in The New York Times op-ed Saturday titled "The Business Deals That Could Imperil Trump."
The premise of Fusion GPS founders Peter Fritsch and Glenn R. Simpson's op-ed is Trump needed cash after his business bankruptcies ruled out American funding and forced him to some sketchy, wealthy foreign sources, including Russians, who "might have been entangled in foreign corruption."
"A string of bankruptcies in the 1990s and 2000s may have left Mr. Trump's companies largely unable to tap traditional sources of financing," the founders wrote. "That could have forced him to look elsewhere for financing and partners at a time when money was pouring out of the former Soviet Union."
The legal hook here lies with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, according to the Fusion GPS founders, whose "opposition research" was funded by President Trump's political opponents seeking to dig up dirt on then-candidate Trump.
"The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which — according to the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice — makes it a crime for a United States company to act with willful blindness toward the corrupt activities of a foreign business partner," the founders wrote.
The writers, who specialize in opposition research, admit the possible corruption connections are still merely speculative albeit still "should have raised red flags" for Trump.
"This reporting has not uncovered conclusive evidence that the Trump Organization or its principals knowingly abetted criminal activity," they wrote. "And it's not reasonable to expect the company to keep track of every condo buyer in a Trump-branded building. But Mr. Trump's company routinely teamed up with individuals whose backgrounds should have raised red flags."
Among the corrupt connections, according to the Fusion GPS founders:
- "A Russian émigré, Felix Sater, linked to organized crime who served time for felony assault and who later pleaded guilty to racketeering involving a $40 million stock fraud scheme."
- "Sunny Isles Beach, where over 60 individuals with Russian passports or addresses bought nearly $100 million worth of units in Trump-branded condominium towers in a part of South Florida known as Little Moscow. Among them were Russian government officials who made million-dollar investments and a Ukrainian owner of two units who pleaded guilty to one count of receipt of stolen property in a money-laundering scheme involving a former Ukrainian prime minister."
- "A Brazilian named Alexandre Ventura Nogueira . . . Panamanian authorities arrested Mr. Nogueira on charges of fraud and forgery."
- "Anar Mammadov — the son of the country’s billionaire transportation minister, Ziya Mammadov, who an American diplomat once described in cables published by WikiLeaks as 'notoriously corrupt even for Azerbaijan.'"
- "The son of Tony Tiah Thee Kian, a Malaysian oligarch who was convicted of providing a false report to the Kuala Lumpur stock exchange."
"It remains unclear whether Mr. Mueller will investigate these deals, or already is," the founders concluded. "But a comprehensive investigation could raise questions about the Trump Organization's compliance with anti-money-laundering laws and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act . . .
"Americans need to be sure that major foreign policy decisions are made in the national interest — not because of foreign ties forged by the president's business ventures."
Artcle From:- https://www.newsmax.com