One of Rudy Giuliani’s close Ukranian-American business associates has agreed to cooperate with congressional impeachment investigators and accused the President of falsely denying their relationship.
If he spills the beans, the implications for the President’s lawyer and the President himself could be devastating.
Lev Parnas, pictured above with Mr Giuliani, had earlier declined to answer questions.
But on Monday his lawyer told Reuters:
“We will honor and not avoid the committee’s requests to the extent they are legally proper, while scrupulously protecting Mr. Parnas’ privileges including that of the Fifth Amendment.”
Why this matters
Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman were arrested on charges of criminal conspiracy and accused of making illegal campaign contributions to advance their business interests.
Rudy Giuliani has admitted he was paid half a million dollars by the two Ukrainian-American businessmen.
U.S. prosecutors allege that an unidentified Russian businessman arranged for two $500,000 wires to be sent from foreign bank accounts to a U.S. account controlled by Fruman in 2018. That money, the indictment says, was used in part to gain influence with U.S. politicians and candidate.
Earlier, Mr Parnas was being represented by Trump’s ex-lawyers. He has since changed his legal representation, who reached out to investigators.
Mr. Parnas is said to be central to Rudy Giuliani’s efforts to dig up dirt on Mr. Trump’s rivals in Ukraine.