Trump’s longtime confidant Thomas Barrack has been arrested in Los Angeles and charged with acting as a foreign agent for the United Arab Emirates, the Justice Department has announced.
According to the DOJ, Mr. Barrack and two other defendants are “accused of acting and conspiring to act as agents of the UAE between April 2016 and April 2018.”
In addition, Mr. Barrack was charged with obstruction of justice and making false statements to federal law enforcement during an FBI interview in June 2019.
Mr. Barrack, the 74-year-old former CEO of Colony Capital, served as an informal adviser to Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and chaired Mr. Trump’s 2017 inauguration. Prosecutors say he exploited those connections to promote interests. of the UAE.
“Barrack allegedly abused his access to government officials to illegally advance the interests of foreign governments,” FBI deputy director Calvin Shivers said in a statement. “The FBI is working with our outside partners to ensure that anyone who tries to illegally influence influence is charged with their crimes.”
The other two defendants are Matthew Grimes, 27, and Rashid Sultan Rashid Al Malik Alshahhi, 43, a UAE national. All three are accused of lobbying for the Arab country without registering as foreign agents, as they should by law.
The defendants repeatedly took advantage of Barrack’s friendships and access to a eventually elected president, senior campaign and government officials, and the U.S. media to further the policy goals of a foreign government without revealing their true allegiances. DOJ. Assistant Attorney General Mark Lesko. “The conduct alleged in the indictment is nothing short of treason against those officials in the United States, including the former president.”
The independent has contacted Mr. Barrack for comment through First Republic Bank, where he is a board member, but has not heard back immediately.
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