Lobbiest/spy also in meeting with Trump Jr

More details are emerging about the meeting that Donald trump Jnr, Jared Kushner, Trump campaign leader Paul Manafort and up to five other people.

AP/Fox:  Russian-American Lobbyist Says He Was in Trump Son’s Meeting with Lawyer

A Russian-American lobbyist says he attended a June 2016 meeting with President Donald Trump’s son, marking another shift in the account of a discussion that was billed as part of a Russian government effort to help the Republican’s White House campaign.

Rinat Akhmetshin confirmed his participation to The Associated Press on Friday. Akhmetshin has been reported to have ties to Russian intelligence agencies, a characterization he dismisses as a “smear campaign.” He told the AP he served in the Soviet military in a unit that was part of counterintelligence but was never formally trained as a spy.

The meeting has heightened questions about whether Trump’s campaign coordinated with the Russian government during the election, which is the focus of federal and congressional investigations. In emails posted by Donald Trump Jr. earlier this week, a music publicist who arranged the meeting said a Russian lawyer wanted to pass on negative information about Democrat Hillary Clinton and stated that the discussion was part of a Russian government effort to help the GOP candidate.

While Trump Jr. has confirmed that Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya was in the meeting, he did not disclose Akhmetshin’s presence. The president’s son has tried to discount the meeting, saying that he did not receive the information he was promised.
In a statement Sunday, Trump Jr. said the attorney said that she had information that people tied to Russia were funding the DNC and supporting Clinton, a description that Akhmetshin backed up in his interview with the AP.

In his first public interview about the meeting, Akhmetshin said he accompanied Veselnitskaya to Trump Tower where they met an interpreter who participated in the meeting. He said he had learned about the meeting only that day when Veselnitskaya asked him to attend. He said he showed up in jeans and a T-shirt.

During the meeting, Akhmetshin said Veselnitskaya brought with her a plastic folder with printed-out documents that detailed what she believed was the flow of illicit funds to the Democratic National Committee. Veselnitskaya presented the contents of the documents to the Trump associates and suggested that making the information public could help the Trump campaign, he said.

“This could be a good issue to expose how the DNC is accepting bad money,” Akhmetshin recalled her saying.

Trump Jr. asked the attorney if she had all the evidence to back up her claims, including whether she could demonstrate the flow of the money. But Veselnitskaya said the Trump campaign would need to research it more. After that, Trump Jr. lost interest, according to Akhmetshin.

“They couldn’t wait for the meeting to end,” he said.

Akhmetshin said he does not know if Veselnitskaya’s documents were provided by the Russian government. He said he thinks she left the materials with the Trump associates. It was unclear if she handed the documents to anyone in the room or simply left them behind, he said.

Also from Fox:

Another person plus an as yet unnamed person were now believed to be in the meeting.

More.

Donald Trump Junior, Jared Kushner, Paul Manafort, the lawyer from Russia, the interpreter, this new guy we found out about today, and a mystery person. John Roberts confirms there was an eight person in the meeting.

Jared Kushner filled out his form, I think it’s an F86, saying who he’d met with and what he’d done, very important stuff, you can go to prison for messing it up intentionally, he went back and added one hundred names and places.  None of these people made it.

 

From The Hill: Kushner updated disclosure to add more than 100 foreign contacts

White House adviser Jared Kushner reportedly updated his federal disclosure form several times to include more than 100 names on a list of foreign contacts.

Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law, updated the list of foreign contacts on his disclosure form — which he needed to submit to get security clearance — three times, The New York Times reported.

He added more than 100 names to it, people close to Kushner told The Times.

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) on Wednesday said in a “normal political world,” Kushner would no longer have his job.

“If this were a normal political world, Jared Kushner wouldn’t have a job by the end of today,” he said during a Wednesday interview, “and at the very least, he should absolutely have his security clearance revoked.”

Kushner may have to update again with another name or two as his memory gets jogged.

UPDATE:

41 Comments

  1. Patzcuaro

     /  July 15, 2017

    Instead of “Draining the Swamp” when he got to Washington it looks like he brought his own.

    http://www.npr.org/2017/04/26/525551816/trumps-efforts-to-drain-the-swamp-lagging-behind-his-campaign-rhetoric

  2. David

     /  July 15, 2017

    In fairness to Kushner the disclosure document he had to fill in had 145 pages of instructions so amending given his previous employment is hardly a surprise.
    Good on the Democrats for flogging this dead horse after 12 months and 4 ongoing investigations the world is desperately waiting for some concrete evidence of something, anything.

    • How long are you going to keep blaming the Democrats?

      There’s a growing amount of concrete evidence – Trump Jr released some himself.

      • Mefrostate

         /  July 15, 2017

        11 July 2017:

        HANNITY: So as far as you know, as far as this incident is concerned, this is all of it?

        TRUMP JR.: This is everything. This is everything.

        http://www.foxnews.com/transcript/2017/07/11/donald-trump-jr-on-hannity-in-retrospect-wouldve-done-things-differently.html

        14/07/2017:

        More people were in the meeting, including an ex-Soviet counter-intelligence officer.

        Trump Jr lied, and Kushner still hasn’t disclosed all his contacts with Russians.

      • David

         /  July 15, 2017

        Aside from meetings with Russians and doubtless there were meetings with other nationalities all we have had confirmed is Trump is not under investigation as there is nothing to investigate the rest is just wild speculation.
        If Trump Jnrs meeting is of such concern so should be the intervention of AG Lynch (once again) in granting the Russian woman a special visa to remain in the US after she was declined.

        • Joe Bloggs

           /  July 15, 2017

          Where’s your evidence trumps not currently under investigation? Can’t produce it? Nah, didn’t think so.

          • David

             /  July 15, 2017

            James Comey former head of the FBI after being fired by Trump in sworn testimony to congress under oath, they investigated Trump and found no collusion and were no longer investigating because there was no evidence.

            • Mefrostate

               /  July 15, 2017

              “they investigated Trump and found no collusion and were no longer investigating because there was no evidence.”

              Completely not what he said. He said that the Trump campaign was under investigation, and Trump specifically wasn’t under investigation, in January.

              No evidence that he has or hasn’t come under investigation since then. Personally, given the Comey firing, it seems quite likely that he would be.

            • Joe Bloggs

               /  July 16, 2017

              That was how long ago? Before the release of how many damaging and different versions of juniors meeting?

              Do you understand the words “in the past” and “currently”?

              No, I didn’t think so.

  3. When Fox turns against you…

    • David

       /  July 15, 2017

      Wallace and Smith are consistently anti Trump, especially Shepard Smith. According to the Harvard media review Fox was 50:50 in negative/positive Trump coverage, CNN was 93% negative.

      • What does that mean in regards what they are saying on this?

        The attack the messenger defence is getting somewhat overused and stale.

        • Mefrostate

           /  July 15, 2017

          Yeah especially when Fox were so incredibly negative towards Obama. Suddenly now everyone is concerned about media bias.

          • PDB

             /  July 15, 2017

            The serious news guys on Fox are the most unbiased in American cable news. Tucker, Hannity, The Five and the like are ‘news entertainment’ and not meant to be unbiased.

            • Mefrostate

               /  July 15, 2017

              “serious news guys on Fox are the most unbiased in American cable news”

              Who? I don’t know Fox all that well because whenever I’ve browsed their website I’ve found it pretty badly slanted.

            • Patzcuaro

               /  July 15, 2017

              @ Mefrostate Fox is unbiased from a right wing/conservative point of view and not meant to be taken seriously.

        • David

           /  July 15, 2017

          You said “when Fox turns” I have Shepard Smith on at 7 am every morning and he is relentlessly anti Trump. Wallace is pretty balanced and gives Trump a good kicking on his Sunday show.

  4. Gee a lobbyist connected to the Intelligence community!!!!! I am completely and utterly stunned….

    Lay some charges and get on with if there is something illegal in this…. i won’t hold my breath…

    • Joe Bloggs

       /  July 15, 2017

      That’s the same “lobbyist” who was the target of a 2015 lawsuit suit filed by the Russian company International Mineral Resources accusing him of hacking a mining company’s private records—stealing internal documents and then disseminating them.

      The corporate espionage case was brought by IMR, who alleged that Akhmetshin was hired by Russian oligarch Andrey Melinchenko.

      A New York law firm paid Akhmetshin $140,000, including expenses, to organize a public relations campaign targeting IMR. Shortly after he began that work, IMR suffered a systematic breach of its computers, and gigabytes of data allegedly stolen in the breach wound up the hands of journalists and human rights groups critical of the mining company.

      IMR accused Akhmetshin of paying Russian hackers to carry out the hack attack.

      Akhmetshin admitted to possessing a hard drive containing files about IMR’s owners that he claimed were compiled from open-source information. But a private investigator hired by IMR, however, claimed that a copy of Akhmetshin’s data provided by a source contained files stolen in the attack.

      That investigator also wrote a sworn declaration testifying that he had heard Akhmetshin boasting in London that he was responsible for the hacking of IMR’s systems. “Mr. Akhmetshin [noted],” the investigator said, “that he was hired because there were certain things that the law firm could not do.”

      Handy guy to have in a meeting to discuss hacked Clinton email, organise their dissemination via Wikileaks, and agree timing of the release.

      • dot…dot….dot….dot….dot….dot

        Unfortunately Joe American politics is FULL of shady types like this russian guy.

        When Trump gets charged with something he is no different to Slick Willy Clinton or numerous other politicos who have made it to the top in the US of A….

  5. Alan Wilkinson

     /  July 15, 2017

    Who cares?

    • Mefrostate

       /  July 15, 2017

      People who aren’t plugging their ears and going “lalalala”.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  July 15, 2017

        They’ll have found something else to care deeply about tomorrow. It will be equally banal and trivial.

        • Mefrostate

           /  July 15, 2017

          Nothing to see here for Alan. Trumps his guy so he’s not worried about the Western order.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  July 15, 2017

            The Western order has F.A. to do with a non-meeting Trump Jr had a year ago. But we couldn’t expect the loony Left to figure that out.

            • Mefrostate

               /  July 15, 2017

              Eh if you can’t see your own hypocrisy I’ll have to attempt to explain the link to you, but I’m on mobile and it’s a nice day.

            • Conspiratoor

               /  July 15, 2017

              If you were a little less patronising mefro you might be taken seriously

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  July 15, 2017

              Don’t bother Mefro. If the entire loony Left media singing in concert can’t manage it I doubt you can. Anyway, here’s some more collusion stuff for your enjoyment:
              http://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/democrats-real-pervasive-collusion-with-russia-somehow-lost-in-medias-hysterical-anti-trump-campaign/
              and
              https://spectator.org/whos-colluding-with-whom/

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  July 15, 2017

              @C, probably not unless he actually produced some evidence.

            • Mefrostate

               /  July 15, 2017

              @Conspiratoor fair enough. Do you think I’m patronising with everyone, or just Alan?

              (here for an example https://yournz.org/2017/07/14/media-watch-friday-61/#comment-201847)

              I get particularly riled up by Alan because he’s clearly a pretty smart guy & has a sharp wit, but he’s so determined to cling to his positions that he engages in some pretty poor-form behaviour (e.g his constant derision of ‘the left’, discounting any evidence that contradicts his position, and trying to ‘win’ a discussion rather than work together to get closer to truth). And I think he allows himself to fail prey to confirmation bias way too much.

              And I’m sure I fall prey to those tendencies as well, but I really, honestly, do try to actively overcome them, and engage in good hard self-reflection if someone points out that I’m doing them. It’s actually why I come here, because there are some smart & reasonable right-wingers, and it’s better that I try to understand their prespective rather than just go hide in a lefty silo. I actually spend quite a lot of time arguing with lefties on reddit as well, because separate ideological silos are bad for us all.

              I think I’ve hit his brick wall so often that I’ve become a bit exasperated by it and become quite patronising with him – because I know he’s better than that. And I’m better than the me I become when I’m arguing with him (end rant).

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  July 15, 2017

              See if you can find a used sense of humour on Trademe, Mefro.

            • Conspiratoor

               /  July 15, 2017

              Mefro, Al has a permanent anti-left filter so I can understand this could be fairly frustrating for you. However at the same time he doesn’t always take himself too seriously. A little humour can sometimes help shift entrenched positions

            • Mefrostate

               /  July 15, 2017

              See, I have to be patronising when he acts like a child. Add “calls Mr Mefro boring to distract the class from important topics” to the report card.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  July 15, 2017

              You could try a witty rejoinder instead, Mefro.

            • Joe Bloggs

               /  July 16, 2017

              Well said Mefro. Alan’s not here to engage, just to troll and fling shit like a gibbon at anyone whose opinion differs from his own. “Witty rejoinders” are wasted on him.

              Cue more trolling in the absence of reasoned responses…

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  July 16, 2017

              Quite wrong as usual, JB. However I think Zedd is the only Lefty here with a functioning sense of humour. Good on him.

  6. Brown

     /  July 15, 2017

    ”discounting any evidence that contradicts his position,”

    Gracious, Alan is a leftie and I had no idea.