Russian tied to 2016 Trump Tower meeting indicted in separate US case

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The indictment, which is unrelated to Russian election interference and brought by the Manhattan U.S. attorney, illustrates Veselnitskaya's close ties to the Russian government, which she has denied.

Natalia Veselnitskaya, 43, was among a group of Russians who met with top Trump campaign figures in June 2016 after an intermediary suggested they had incriminating information on Hillary Clinton.

"I had never been looking for a meeting neither with Trump Jr., nor Sr., nor his team", Veselnitskaya told Fox News in an email sent in Russian and translated to English by her translator.

The indictment does not say where the evidence of email exchanges between Veselnitskaya and the unnamed Russian prosecutor came from.

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Veselnitskaya has always maintained that her reason for pursuing the Trump Tower meeting with campaign officials was to discuss the adoption issue. He also has scrutinized Trump's role in drafting a misleading public statement about the meeting's content. Lev Leviev, known as the 'King of Diamonds, ' a partner of Prevezon Holdings, was involved with Jared Kushner in a 2015 sale of part of The New York Times building.

A spokesman for Mr Mueller declined to comment on the charge against Ms Veselnitskaya.

Veselnitskaya, an attorney based in Russian Federation, was retained to assist the defendants.

Although Veselnitskaya is best known for attending the 2016 Trump Tower meeting with senior members of the Trump campaign, the federal indictment (pdf) unsealed January 8 is not directly related to the meeting or the special counsel investigation by Robert Mueller.

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The indictment was filed under seal in December and publicly announced Tuesday by Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman. This report, submitted by Russian Federation under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) with the U.S., was then cited by Veselnitskaya in defending the real estate company Prevezon Holdings Ltd. from claims of money laundering by "Investment Company-1". The department had alleged in a civil complaint that a Russian criminal organization ran an elaborate tax refund scheme, stealing the identities of targeted companies and filing sham lawsuits to incur fake losses for refund purposes.

Veselnitskaya was retained to assist the defendants.

Ms Veselnitskaya has been accused of making misleading statements about her involvement in the response to the United States courts during the case.

These "supposed investigative findings by the Russian government-findings purportedly exonerating Veselnitskaya's clients - under the false pretense that these findings had been independently drafted by the Russian government". The case was settled in 2017, with Prevezon paying a $5.9 million fine without admitting any wrongdoing. A federal judge ordered the firm last February to pay US$6 million to the U.S. government.

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Without naming Browder, the indictment states that "CEO-1 had participated in publicizing the Russian Treasury Fraud and in lobbying the U.S. Government to pass a law imposing sanctions on persons involved in the prosecution and custodial treatment of Magnitsky". He later died in jail, with Browder claiming that Magnitsky was murdered because of what he uncovered about Prevezon.

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