U.S. federal agents raided the Manhattan home and office of Rudy Giuliani Wednesday in a major extension of the U.S. Justice Department’s investigation into the business dealings of former U.S. President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer.
Giuliani, a 76-year-old former New York City mayor who celebrated his leadership after the September 11 attacks, has been under federal scrutiny for years over his relationship with Ukraine.
Agents searched Giuliani’s home on Madison Avenue and his office on Park Avenue, those familiar with the investigation told the Associated Press.
The warrants, which require the approval of higher levels of the judiciary, are believed by prosecutors to be a possible reason Giuliani committed a federal crime – they do not guarantee that the charges will be carried out.
A third search warrant has been issued for a phone owned by Washington attorney Victoria Donsing, a former federal attorney and a close ally of Giuliani and Trump. His law firm issued a statement informing him that he was not the target of the investigation.
The investigation will include some Ukrainian activities
The full purpose of the investigation is not clear, but law enforcement officials have told Andhra Pradesh that it was at least partially involved in Giuliani’s activities in Ukraine.
People discussing the searches and Wednesday events were unable to do so publicly and spoke to the AP anonymously. The news of the search was first reported by The New York Times.
In a statement issued by his lawyer, Giuliani accused federal officials of being a “corrupt double standard”, inciting accusations leveled against key Democrats, and said the judiciary was “concerned about, or legally defending, the constitutional rights of anyone involved”. Trump. “
“Mr. Giuliani respects the law and can prove that his conduct as a lawyer and citizen is completely legal and ethical,” the statement said.
Giuliani’s son Andrew Giuliani told reporters that the tests were “disgusting” and “absolutely ridiculous.”
A judicial spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan and the FBI’s New York office declined to comment.
The federal investigation into Giuliani’s foreign and business transactions was halted last year due to controversy over the tactics of the investigation. Trump lost the re-election, And between Giuliani’s key role in denying the election results.
The tests came on Wednesday A few months after Trump stepped down. The former president no longer enjoys the legal protection granted to him by the Oval Office – there are no signs that Trump is focusing on this investigation.
Trump’s spokesman did not immediately respond to questions about Wednesday’s events.
Many in Trump’s orbit have previously been embroiled in federal investigations, namely the investigation into Special Adviser Robert Mueller’s Russian election interference. Most of those criminal cases were distorted or dropped. Giuliani is different.
Democratic rival Joe Biden and Biden and his son Hunter should press Ukraine for an investigation – Who now Facing a criminal tax investigation.
And Giuliani Sought to undermine the former US ambassador to Ukraine Mary Yovanovich, who was ousted on Trump’s orders, met with the Ukrainian legislator several times before he released Biden’s revised record in an attempt to defraud Biden.
Giuliani’s lawyer, Robert Costello, said the warrants included allegations that Giuliani had failed to register as a foreign agent, and that John Solomon, a former columnist in the investigative documents and often a Fox News commentator, had a close relationship with Giuliani when he made unsubstantiated or unsubstantiated allegations.
Phone records released by House Democrats in 2019 following Trump’s first indictment show frequent contact with Giuliani, Solomon and Giuliani ally Lev Barnes, who is accused of using foreign money to make illegal campaign contributions.
While he said the issues raised at Trump’s first indictment were not entirely surprising, Solomon said Wednesday that he had news that the judiciary was interested in any communication with Giuliani.
“He was someone who tried to send me information, and I didn’t use most of it,” Solomon said of Gioliani. “If they want to see it, there’s nothing surprising in it.”
Solomon said he believed his reporting was “a test of time” and that he “did not know of a single true error” in any of his stories.
Solomon’s former employer, The Hill newspaper, published a review of some of his columns last year and concluded that they lacked context and missing key revelations. Solomon previously worked for the Associated Press, departing in 2006.
Individuals lobbying on behalf of a foreign government or entity under the Federal Foreign Agents Registration Act must register with the judiciary. The once ambiguous law, aimed at improving transparency, has attracted attention in recent years – especially during Mல்லller’s trial, which has revealed a series of foreign influence actions in the United States.
Federal prosecutors, once led by Giuliani in the Manhattan office – with high profile cases of mafia figures in the 1980s – were forced to search warrants for records last year.
They also included some of Giuliani’s communications, but officials in the Justice Department during the Trump era did not sign the request, insisting on anonymity to talk about the investigation as they know it.
Officials in the then deputy attorney general’s office raised concerns about both the purpose of the request, which they thought could be linked to the legal concessions between Giuliani and Trump and the method of obtaining records.