Tuesday, July 18, 2017

The Eighth Man, and WTF?

That was quick. Thought he was going to remain anonymous for a while. It is damned hard to keep up these days.
Ike Kaveladze’s presence was confirmed by Scott Balber, an attorney for Emin and Aras Agalarov, the Russian developers who hosted the Trump-owned Miss Universe pageant in 2013. Balber said Kaveladze works for the Agalarovs’ company and attended as their representative.

Balber said Tuesday that he received a phone call from a representative of Special Counsel Robert Mueller over the weekend requesting the identity of the Agalarov representative , which he said he provided.

So now we have confirmation that Mueller is on this meeting like flies on shit.
Balber said Kaveladze works as a vice president focusing on real estate and finance for the Agalarov’s company, the Crocus Group. Aras Agalarov requested that Kaveladze attend the meeting on his behalf, Balber said.
Oh. So not accidentally as an interpreter when there was already an interpreter at the meeting?
Balber said Kaveladze believed he would act as a translator, but arrived to discover that the lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya had brought her own translator, a former State Department employee named Anatoli Samochornov.
So which is it? To act as an interpreter or as an Agalarov representative?
Samochornov has declined to comment, citing a non-disclosure agreement he signed as a professional translator.
Wait till he gets into Mueller's offices.

And why did Agalarov, "the son of a billionaire Azerbaijani real estate developer who once planned to build a hotel in Moscow with Donald Trump" (citation), need representation? Or, asked, as Trump says he did Putin, a second time in a totally different way: Why did the Trump Cabal feel the need to hide the fact that he was there?
Kaveladze “was asked to attend the meeting purely to…make sure it happened,” said Balber.

  LA Times
Is that not ominous?
“He literally had no idea what the meeting was about until he showed up right before.”
Sure. Sure. He's completely innocent. But why did Agalarov have to "make sure the meeting happened"?

This shit is getting deeper and deeper.
Balber [...] said his client was “cooperating fully,” with investigators.
That's probably not so good for the Trump Cabal.
Balber said Kaveladze did not recall saying anything at the half-hour meeting on June 9, 2016.
Wouldn't be necessary if you're just there as an enforcer.
“He’s absolutely baffled,” said Balber. “Even the Agalarovs are absolutely baffled. Nobody had any expectation this would be what it’s become, especially this poor guy, who had not been involved before."
Oh. Oh. The Agalarovs are baffled, but they sent a guy to make sure it happened.

What they didn't expect was that Junior would spill the beans on the meeting and that there would eventually be a special prosecutor looking into their business.
According to Balber, Veselnitskaya - who had done real estate work for the Agalarovs in Moscow - asked one of the Agalarovs to provide an introduction to the Trumps.

The Agalarovs then asked a publicist, Rob Goldstone, to contact Donald Trump Jr.

“This was not a highly important item to the Agalarovs," Balber said. "If it were, I suspect it would have happened very differently.”
Like what? He would have gone personally to make sure it happened?
After giving Trump Jr. papers purporting to describe illegal donations, Veselnitskaya and Akhmetshin shifted the conversation to the Magnitsky Act.
I missed the part where we know for certain she gave him that particular information. I was under the impression that was just speculation at this point. Damn, it's hard to keep up.
Rinat Akhmetshin, a Russian-American lobbyist who served in the Soviet military, told The Associated Press on Friday that the lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, presented documents that she believed detailed the flow of illicit funds to the Democratic National Committee.

  Business Insider
Aklmetshin was there.
In Akhmetshin's recounting, Veselnitskaya suggested to those in the meeting [...] that they make the contents of the documents public. She said that doing so could help Trump's campaign, Akhmetshin said.

"This could be a good issue to expose how the DNC is accepting bad money," he recalled her saying.
And Junior told us the meeting was a wash - that he got nothing. And what a shame that was, he told Sean Hannity on national TV.
Trump Jr. did not disclose Akhmetshin's participation in the meeting, nor has he made mention of any documents presented or left behind.


Akhmetshin said Trump Jr. then asked whether she had evidence to back up the assertion, to which Veselnitskaya said the campaign would have to do more research on the subject. That's when Trump Jr. lost interest, Akhmetshin said.
I see. He got SOMEthing, but not enough. The campaign would have to do research? Really? Who needs that?

And you know what? I'm dubious. I think I'll wait to see what documents Mueller's people dig up.

...but hey, do what you want...you will anyway.

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