Trump Jr. asked for documents showing illegal proceeds went to Clinton campaign, Russian lawyer says

Executive Branch

Donald Trump Jr./A Katz (Shutterstock.com).

Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya describes her June 2016 meeting with Donald Trump Jr. as a failure, she says in an interview with Bloomberg News.

Veselnitskaya says Trump Jr. indicated that a law targeting Russia could be re-examined if Donald Trump were elected, Bloomberg reports. He also asked whether Veselnitskaya had any written evidence that major Democratic donors had used any illegal proceeds, allegedly gained by evading taxes, to help fund Hillary Clinton’s campaign, she says.

Veselnitskaya tells Bloomberg she didn’t have any of the requested documents.

Trump Jr. has said he went to the meeting in hopes of receiving information that was useful to his father’s presidential campaign, but Veselnitskaya offered nothing of consequence. Another person at the meeting was Paul Manafort, the president’s now-indicted former campaign manager.

Veselnitskaya says she told Trump Jr. that two brothers had gained nearly $1 billion from Russian investments and had allegedly evaded taxes on the money. She says she told Trump Jr. that some of the money may have gone to the Clinton campaign.

But the meeting went nowhere, according to Veselnitskaya. Jared Kushner—the president’s son-in-law and top adviser—left after a few minutes and Manafort appeared to have fallen asleep, she said.

According to Bloomberg, the brothers’ investment company contributed to both Democrats and Republicans since the 2012 election cycle.

The brothers had invested money in Russia through William Browder, whose Hermitage Capital fund had employed Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian lawyer who died in 2009 while in prison. Magnitsky’s supporters said he was sent to prison after discovering a tax fraud that diverted Russian state funds to some civil servants.

The U.S. law targeting Russia was called the Magnitsky law and was passed in response to Magnitsky’s death. Russia banned adoptions by U.S. families in response to the law.

Veselnitskaya told Bloomberg she is willing to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee if it makes her answers public. She also said that, if she is asked, she will testify in special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe.

The Senate Judiciary Committee wants information about Russian hacking and interference in the election.

“That I definitely don’t have!” Veselnitskaya said.


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