Jul 19, 2019

Mueller witness George Nader charged with sex trafficking

George Nader in 1999. Photo: Ron Sachs/CNP/Getty Images

George Nader, who served as a go-between for President Trump's transition team and Russian and Middle East officials in 2016 and 2017, was charged in a Virginia federal court on Friday with sex trafficking, child pornography and obscenity, as first reported by The Daily Beast.

Why it matters: Today's indictment adds additional child pornography incidents to last month's charges, as well as new counts of sex trafficking and obscenity. From Axios' Zach Basu: Nader was a key witness in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation and is known to have set up a now-infamous meeting in the Seychelles between Trump associate Erik Prince and a Russian official with close ties to the Kremlin. He has presented himself as close to the United Arab Emirates’ de-facto ruler, Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, and was convicted of transporting child porn 28 years ago. Today's indictment adds additional child pornography to last month's charges, as well as new counts of sex trafficking and obscenity.

Go deeper: Read more about Nader in a searchable version of the Mueller report.

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Timeline: Every big move in the Mueller investigation

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio / Axios

After nearly two years, special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation netted 199 criminal charges, 37 indictments or guilty pleas, and 5 prison sentences.

Driving the news: Mueller will make his much-hyped appearance before the House Intelligence and Judiciary committees on Wednesday, but neither party expects to learn anything new from his testimony, Axios' Alayna Treene reports.

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Jeffrey Epstein dead in apparent suicide

Jeffrey Epstein. Photo: Neil Rasmus/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Jeffrey Epstein, a financier and registered sex offender accused of sex trafficking female minors, is dead in an apparent suicide at Manhattan's Metropolitan Correctional Center.

The latest: Law enforcement officials said Epstein, 66, hanged himself and was found in his jail cell Saturday about 7:30am. Attorney General Bill Barr asked the inspector general to open an investigation into Epstein's death, as the FBI conducts its own investigation. Authorities investigated a previous suicide attempt in July. An autopsy was performed on his body, officials said Sunday, without releasing details, per AP.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Aug 12, 2019

R. Kelly charged in Minnesota with solicitation involving girl, 17

Singer R. Kelly leaves court after a hearing in Chicago on June 26. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

R. Kelly was charged Monday by a Minnesota prosecutor with engaging in prostitution and solicitation after he was accused of inviting a 17-year-old girl to his hotel room 18 years ago and paid her $200 to dance naked with him.

The big picture: The 52-year-old R&B singer is already facing charges including sexual abuse, child pornography and obstruction of justice in Illinois and New York.

Go deeper: Women of color have been saying #MeToo for decades