Nov 25, 2019

WSJ: Prosecutors examining wide array of possible charges in Giuliani probe

Photo: William B. Plowman/NBC/NBC Newswire/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Subpoenas issued by federal prosecutors in recent weeks suggest a sweeping investigation is being conducted into Rudy Giuliani and his associates, with potential charges including obstruction of justice, fraud and money laundering, the Wall Street Journal first reported and the Washington Post confirmed.

What we know: Prosecutors have issued subpoenas seeking records and information related to Giuliani and two associates, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, who have already been indicted on campaign finance violations. The investigation is being led by the FBI and the Southern District of New York, the U.S. attorney's office that Giuliani once ran.

  • Giuliani has denied any wrongdoing. Parnas and Fruman have pleaded not guilty.
  • Prosecutors are also seeking information about the pro-Trump groups America First Action and America First Policies.

The subpoenas suggest that the following charges are being considered, according to the Journal.

  • Obstruction of justice
  • Money laundering
  • Conspiracy to defraud the United States
  • Making false statements to the federal government
  • Serving as an unregistered foreign agent
  • Donating funds from foreign nationals
  • Making contributions in a false name
  • Mail fraud
  • Wire fraud

The big picture: Giuliani, President Trump's personal lawyer, is a key figure in the House's impeachment inquiry due to allegations that he led a shadow campaign to pressure Ukraine to announce investigations into Trump's political rivals.

  • Parnas and Fruman helped introduce Giuliani to Ukrainian officials involved in promoting unsubstantiated allegations about Joe Biden and his son, as well as former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, who was removed from her post as a result.
  • At times, those efforts intersected with Parnas' and Fruman's business interests, per the Journal. Since being indicted, Parnas has signaled that he is willing to cooperate in the impeachment inquiry.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

The technology of witnessing brutality

Charging Alabama state troopers pass by fallen demonstrators in Selma on March 7, 1965. Photo: Bettmann/Getty Images

The ways Americans capture and share records of racist violence and police misconduct keep changing, but the pain of the underlying injustices they chronicle remains a stubborn constant.

Driving the news: After George Floyd's death at the hands of Minneapolis police sparked wide protests, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz said, “Thank God a young person had a camera to video it."

28 mins ago - Health

Lessons from the lockdown — and what comes next

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

We are nowhere near finished with the coronavirus, but the next phases of our response will — if we do it right — be more targeted and risk-based than the sweeping national lockdown we’re now emerging from.

Why it matters: Our experience battling this new virus has taught us a lot about what does and doesn’t work. We’ll have to apply those lessons rigorously, and keep adapting, if we have any hope of containing the virus and limiting the number of deaths from here on out.

Updated 46 mins ago - Politics & Policy

George Floyd protests: Unrest continues for 6th night across U.S.

A protest near the White House on Sunday night. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Most external lights at the White House were turned off late Sunday as the D.C. National Guard was deployed and authorities fired tear gas at hundreds of protesters nearby, per the New York Times.

What's happening: It's one of several tense, late-night standoffs between law enforcement and demonstrators in the United States over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people.