Natalia V. Veselnitskaya, the Russian lawyer who in 2016 met with Trump campaign officials in Trump Tower, was charged on Tuesday in a separate case that showed her close ties to the Kremlin, according to the NY Times.
UNRELATED TO TRUMP TOWER, BUT…
She was charged with obstruction of justice in a case unrelated to Trump Tower, but she is the Russian attorney who met with Trump’s team, including his son, son-in-law, and campaign manager for a 20-minute meeting in Trump Tower. That meeting caused a constant swirl of controversy and accusations against the President’s son and the President.
Ms. Veselnitskaya was charged by federal prosecutors in New York with seeking to thwart a Justice Department civil fraud investigation into money laundering that involved an influential Russian businessman and his investment firm.
The federal indictment returned in Manhattan seemed to confirm that Ms. Veselnitskaya had deep ties to senior Russian government officials.
THE REAL PROBLEMS
Famed attorney Alan Dershowitz said the case looks solid, but the question will be is this a selective prosecution?
Dershowitz said there are two real problems. One, the U.S. Attorneys’ office almost never brings indictments against misleading affidavits submitted in civil cases. Two, the U.S. attorney is the victim here so for them to selectively choose this case to prosecute raises some questions.
Finally, Dershowitz asked, is this just an effort to turn the screws to her to get her to talk about the Trump Tower meeting? It wouldn’t be illegal, but it raises questions.
Ironically, it was Obama’s Department of Justice that allowed her into the country under “extraordinary circumstances” before she ever met with Trump’s team. She also met with Fusion GPS, Hillary’s opposition research team, before and immediately after the Trump Tower meeting.