Lobbyist who attended Trump Jr.‘s meeting with Russian lawyer reportedly testifies before grand jury

Election Law

Trump Jr Mug

Donald Trump Jr. in 2010. s_bukley (Shutterstock.com.)

A Russian lobbyist who attended a June 2016 meeting in which Donald Trump Jr. expected to receive damaging information about Hillary Clinton has reportedly testified before a grand jury used by special counsel Robert Mueller.

The lobbyist is Rinat Akhmetshin, the Associated Press reports in a story based on an anonymous source. Financial Times (sub. req.) was first with the report, which was summarized by several publications, including Raw Story.

According to AP, Akhmetshin’s testimony “is the clearest indication yet that Mueller and his team of investigators view the meeting, which came weeks after [Donald] Trump had secured the Republican presidential nomination, as a relevant inquiry point in their broader probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election.”

The meeting was also attended by Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner; and a former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort.

According to a prior story by the New York Times, Akhmetshin has worked with allies of Russian President Vladimir Putin and has an association with the former deputy head of the Russian spy service.

Akhmetshin, a Russian immigrant who became a U.S. citizen in 2009, has said he was a last-minute guest to the meeting and has denied any suggestion that he has Russian spy ties.

“I am the target of a well-coordinated and financed smear campaign,” he told the Times.

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