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“Bait And Switch”: Trump Tower Meeting May Have Been A Russian Trick

The intermediary who set up the Trump Tower meeting, Rob Goldstone, said during Congressional testimony reviewed by Breitbart that he believes the June 9, 2016 meeting was a “bait and switch” by a Russian lobbyist who promised “dirt” on Hillary Clinton, and admitted that he used hyperbolic language on purpose to ensure that the meeting would take place.

“I, therefore, used the strongest hyperbolic language in order to secure this request from Donald Trump Jr. based on the bare facts I was given,” said Goldstone, a UK publicist and music manager. 

“It was an example of, I was given very limited information, and my job was to get a meeting, and so I used my professional use of words to emphasize what my client had only given bare-bones information about, in order to get the attention of Mr. Trump Jr.” -Rob Goldstone

Goldstone then said “it appeared to me to have been a bait and switch of somebody who appeared to be lobbying for what I now understood to be the Magnitsky act,” – which sanctions Russian officials thought to be involved in the death of a Russian tax accountant.

Fusion GPS associate Natalia Veselnitskaya, an attorney for Russian businessman and Fusion GPS client Denis Katsyv, said that Emin Agalarov – the son of Russian oligarch Aras Agalarov – told her to contact his representative, Irakly “Ike” Kaveladze to set up the Trump Tower meeting, which Kaveladze attended. 

While both Agalarov and Katsyv opposed the Magnitsky act, Veselnitskaya worked only for Katsyv, while approaching Agalarov and his associates to participate in the Trump Tower meeting. Of ntoe, Agalarov organized the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow when it was partially owned by Donald Trump. 

Veselnitskaya said Agalarov told her to get in touch with Kaveladze about the meeting because he had connections with the Trump team.

Veselnitskaya said she made a point of asking Goldstone — who she mistakenly thought was a lawyer — whether it was OK to include Akhmetshin, given that he was a registered lobbyist. Goldstone told her it was fine, she said.NBC News

On June 3, 2016, Goldstone sent an email to Trump Jr. on behalf of Emin Agalarov to set up the meeting. Goldstone was described last July as “associated with Fusion GPS” by Mark Corallo – spokesman for Trump’s outside legal counsel, according to the Washington Post

“Specifically, we have learned that the person who sought the meeting is associated with Fusion GPS, a firm which according to public reports, was retained by Democratic operatives to develop opposition research on the president and which commissioned the phony Steele dossier” -Mark Corallo

From Goldstone’s June 3rd email to Trump Jr. – six days before the Trump Tower meeting:

The Crown prosecutor of Russia met with his father Aras this morning and in their meeting offered to provide the Trump campaign with some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be very useful to your father.

This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump – helped along by Aras and Emin.

Trump Jr. replied to Goldstone that “if it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer.” 

Breitbart News previously reported that Russian-born Washington lobbyist Rinat Akhmetshin, who attended the meeting with Veselnitskaya, evidenced a larger relationship with Fusion GPS and the controversial firm’s co-founder Glenn Simpson, according to Akhmetshin’s testimony before the same committee. –Breitbart

Fusion’s fingerprints are all over this…

Hours before Veselnitskaya attended the Trump Tower meeting to lobby Trump Jr. about the Magnitsky act, she met with Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson.

While most people know that Fusion GPS was paid by the Clinton campaign to produce the infamous “Steele Dossier” – assembled by former MI6 spy Christopher Steele, Fusion was also working for a Russian businessman who wanted the Magnitsky act repealed, Denis Katsyv, and Veselnitskaya was his lawyer who was given special permission by the Obama DOJ to enter the U.S. to represent him. 

In late November of 2017, The Daily Caller‘s Chuck Ross reported that heavily redacted Fusion GPS bank records reveal DNC law firm Perkins Coie paid Fusion a total of $1,024,408 in 2016 for opposition research on then-candidate Donald Trump – including the 34-page dossier.

Ross also reported that law firm Baker Hostelter paid Fusion $523,651 between March and October 2016 on behalf of a company owned by Katsyv to research Bill Browder, a London banker who helped push through the Magnitsky Act.

Katsyv was busted for a high level embezzlement and money laundering scheme, sanctioned by Russian Officials, in which large sums of money were stolen from the Russian government and invested in New York real estate. Some of the missing funds were traced to Katsyv‘s firm, Prevezon Holdings Ltd., which settled with the Justice Department in 2017 – paying $5.9 million in fines.

About Natalia

Veselnitskaya – a John McCain fan who hates Trump and uses Democrat lobbyists, was initially denied entry into the United States, only to be allowed in under “extraordinary circumstances” by Obama’s Homeland Security Department and approved by former AG Loretta Lynch so she could represent Fusion GPS client Prevezon Holdings – and attend the meeting at Trump Tower with Donald Trump Jr. – arranged by Fusion associate Rob Goldstone.

Of note, McCain was a key force behind the Magnitsky act: 

In 2010, I traveled to Washington and told Sergei Magnitsky’s story to Senators Benjamin Cardin and John McCain. They were both shocked and appalled and proposed a new piece of legislation called The Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act. This would freeze assets and ban visas for those who killed Sergei as well as other Russians involved in serious human rights abuse. –The Atlantic

Let’s Review:

  • Russian businessman Denis Katsyv was a key figure in an embezzlement and money laundering scheme involving New York real estate, uncovered by Russian lawyer and accountant Sergei Magnitsky. Magnitsky reportedly died in Moscow’s Butyrka prison after a year of inhumane treatment. 
  • Katsyv settled with the U.S. Justice department in 2017, paying a paltry $5.9 million in 2017 to settle the case – less than 3% of the amount originally sought by federal prosecutors. 
  • Fusion GPS was paid $523,651 by Katsyv to investigate London Banker Bill Browder who pushed for the Magnitsky Act, while Katsyv’s attorney, Natalia Veselnitskaya, was in the United States actively lobbying to remove the sanctions imposed by the Magnitsky Act.
  • Fusion GPS associate Rob Goldstone set up the infamous meeting at Trump Tower between Donald Trump Jr., Katsyv’s lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya and various associates. The meeting was shut down by Trump Jr. after it became clear Veselnitskaya wanted to discuss the Magnitsky Act. 
  • Hours before the Trump Tower meeting, Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson met with Veselnitskaya.

Meanwhile…

  • Fusion GPS was paid $1,024,408 by DNC law firm Perkins Coie, which acted as an intermediary for Hillary Clinton and the DNC, to create the salacious 34 page dossier.
  • Fusion paid former British spy Christopher Steele $168,000 to assemble the Trump-Russia “Steele dossier” (which included the cooperation of two senior Kremlin officials).
  • Clinton campaign manager John Podesta met with Fusion CEO Glenn Simpson the day after the 34 page dossier was made public.

For their efforts, Fusion GPS was paid over $1.5 million dollars between Hillary Clinton, the DNC, and the holding company owned by pro-Kremlin businessman Denis Katsyv.

Also recall that Fusion GPS hired Nellie Ohr, the CIA-linked wife of demoted DOJ official, Bruce Ohr, to help with investigation Trump, and that Bruce Ohr was demoted after meeting with Simpson and Christopher Steele, the former MI6 spy who assembled the dossier for Fusion.

House investigators have determined that Ohr met shortly after the election with Glenn Simpson, the founder of Fusion GPS the opposition research firm that hired Steele to compile the dossier with funds supplied by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee.

…evidence collected by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI), chaired by Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., indicates that Ohr met during the 2016 campaign with Christopher Steele, the former British spy who authored the dossier.   –Fox News

Let’s also remember Fusion’s failed effort to link the President to billionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein:

Since you asked, yes, they helped me with that, Mr. Silverstein said. But as you can see, I could not make a strong case for Trump being super close to Epstein, so they could hardly have been thrilled with that story. [In my humble opinion], that was the best story written about Trumps ties to Epstein, but I failed to nail him. Trumps ties were mild compared to Bill Clintons.

As well as a fabricated story that a secret email server existed between Trump Tower and Moscow’s Alpha Bank – which was debunked by internet sleuths who traced the IP address to a marketing server located outside Philadelphia. 

Fusion is currently being sued for libel in two separate cases by three Russian businessmen-bankers in US District Court for their inclusion in the Dossier, along with the ‘secret server’ story pushed by Glenn Simpson. Alfa bank executives Mikhail Fridman, Petr Aven and German Khan filed suit in early October, claiming their reputations were harmed by the largely unsubstantiated document.

To defend themselves, Fusion hit back in a January New York Times op-ed.

Co-founders Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch spent a little over 900 words denying what they call “conspiracy theories” surrounding their “motives and backers,” while calling on Congress to release the full transcripts of their November testimony (after having bailed on their first appearance).

Simpson and Fritsch admitted or confirmed the following: 

  • Hillary Clinton paid for Fusion GPS services
  • Fusion assisted an intermediary who delivered the dossier to John McCain
  • The dossier relied on sources in Russia (who were not paid, Fusion claims)

Also peppered throughout the op-ed are several claims meant to “correct the record,” including: 

  • The Steele dossier did not spark the FBI investigation into Russian meddling

We don’t believe the Steele dossier was the trigger for the F.B.I.’s investigation into Russian meddling. As we told the Senate Judiciary Committee in August, our sources said the dossier was taken so seriously because it corroborated reports the bureau had received from other sources, including one inside the Trump camp.

  • Fusion didn’t tell former MI6 spy Christopher Steele what he would be working on

Yes, we hired Mr. Steele, a highly respected Russia expert. But we did so without informing him whom we were working for and gave him no specific marching orders beyond this basic question: Why did Mr. Trump repeatedly seek to do deals in a notoriously corrupt police state that most serious investors shun?

  • Fusion had no knowledge of the Trump Tower meeting on June 9, 2016

…we debunked the biggest canard being pushed by the president’s men — the notion that we somehow knew of the June 9, 2016, meeting in Trump Tower between some Russians and the Trump brain trust. We first learned of that meeting from news reports last year.

Seems like a “bait and switch” that went sideways on November 8, 2016…