, 48 tweets, 15 min read
Trump Urged Then-Secretary of State Tillerson to Help Drop DOJ Case Against Giuliani’s Client: Report #RezaZarrab #TrumpTowersIstanblul thedailybeast.com/trump-urged-ex… via @thedailybeast
@thedailybeast "President Trump urged then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to help convince the Justice Department to drop a criminal case against Iranian-Turkish trader Reza Zarrab—then a client of Rudy Giuliani—in a 2017 Oval Office meeting, according to Bloomberg."
"Tillerson reportedly refused, saying the move would amount to interference in an active investigation. He is also said to have emphasized to then-CoS John Kelly in a separate conversation that the request to the DOJ would be illegal...." #RezaZarrab #TrumpTowersIstanbul
"At the time, Zarrab was being prosecuted by the feds for evading U.S. sanctions against Iran’s nuclear program. Trump's current personal attorney, Giuliani, and ex-Attorney General Michael Mukasey were hired to represent Zarrab in the case."
"Giuliani initially denied ever mentioning Zarrab's case to Trump, but later backtracked, according to the report. “Suppose I did talk to Trump about it—so what? I was a private lawyer at the time,” Giuliani told Bloomberg...."
Giuliani: "Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe at some point I dropped his name in a conversation.”

[Giuliani, America's Mayor aka paid ho for foreign $$$ launderers] then suggested that perhaps one of Trump's staff spoke to him about the Zarrab case when he was trying to arrange a swap of Zarrab for American pastor Andrew Brunson—who was jailed in Turkey but released last yr."
Giuliani also said he discussed the Zarrab case with State Department officials, but did not say if he spoke to Tillerson about the matter. The White House, along with representatives for Kelly and Tillerson, all declined to comment."

Figured that much.

The Daily Beast article, then links to the Bloomberg piece.

Trump Urged Top Aide to Help Giuliani Client Facing DOJ Charges

"The White House declined to comment. Kelly and Tillerson declined to comment via representatives. Another person familiar with the matter said the Justice Department never considered dropping the criminal case."
#Zarrab was being prosecuted in federal court in NY...on charges of evading US sanctions against Iran’s nuclear program. He had hired former AG Michael Mukasey & Giuliani, who...reached out repeatedly to U.S. officials to seek a diplo solution for his client outside the courts."
A "diplomatic solution"...you mean like...a prisoner swap?


Why YES. A prisoner swap!

"Giuliani said he’d been speaking with U.S. officials as part of his effort to arrange A SWAP of Zarrab for Andrew Brunson, an American pastor jailed in Turkey who was later released in 2018."
"The president’s request to Tillerson -- which included asking him to speak with Giuliani - bears the hallmarks of Trump’s governing style, defined by his willingness to sweep aside the customary procedures and constraints of government to pursue matters outside normal channels."

"Tillerson’s objection came to light as Trump’s dealings with foreign leaders face intense scrutiny following the July 25 call with UKRAINE'S president that has sparked an impeachment inquiry in the House."
"The episode is...likely to fuel...concerns from some of Trump’s critics about his policies toward Turkey and his relationship /its authoritarian president...Erdogan. Zarrab’s release was a high priority for Erdogan until the gold trader agreed to cooperate w/prosecutors in NY."
"It isn’t clear whether Trump considered his request for Tillerson to intervene to be improper or was just testing the bounds of what he could do as president on an issue that could provide diplomatic benefits while also helping Giuliani, a longtime supporter...."
"The Oval Office meeting occurred in the second half of 2017 and Giuliani wasn’t the president’s personal lawyer at the time, as he is now."


I hate to say I told you so, but I told you so, lol:

11/30/16 Trump's first contact with Bharara

12/16 Trump "shoot the breeze" contact

1/18/17 Trump "check in..." contact

3/9/17 Preet Bharara asked to resign

Preet refuses, is fired 3/11/17

Moving on...

"Giuliani said he discussed the #Zarrab case with State Department officials and disclosed that two years ago, although he declined to say if he ever spoke directly to Tillerson about the case, saying “you have no right to know that.” #TrumpTowersIstanbul
Dropping these fun bits in for shits and giggles: #TrumpTowersIstanbul #TrumpBetrayedTheKurds
"State Department Alarm

Concerns about Trump’s close alliance with Erdogan were exacerbated this week after Trump abruptly announced on Sunday that he would clear U.S. troops from the path of a planned Turkish invasion in northeast Syria."
"The weekend announcement drew quick criticism from top Republican lawmakers, who said it endangered Kurdish forces the U.S. relied on to defeat Islamic State. Those Kurdish-led forces are now under attack."
"Trump followed his weekend decision w/an announcement Tuesday that he has invited Erdogan to the WH in 11/19."

How nice for us.

"As he was with Ukraine, Giuliani was so steeped in events in #Turkey that State Department officials grew increasingly alarmed."
"Earlier in 2017, he had traveled to the country and met w/Erdogan as part of his effort to seek a resolution in Zarrab’s case.

He and Mukasey said in a ltr to the judge in Zarrab’s case that they notified then-AG Jeff Sessions of their plans before holding a meeting w/Erdogan."
Just remembered...Ron Johnson in the Ukraine cockup...

And, Ron Johnson in the Turkey cockup:

"Erdogan repeatedly spoke with Trump and, before 2017, Obama administration officials about Zarrab’s case when it was before the Southern District of NY as part of a broader investigation into a scheme to evade sanctions on Iran."

Yup. Biden there, too.

"Here, the Turkish FM that @SenRonJohnson met with - LIES - and says that Obama and Biden told him they were going to extradite the Turkish cleric, Gulen.."

@SenRonJohnson "At one point, the State Dept...got involved in discussions over possibly swapping #Zarrab for Brunson, the jailed pastor, but the matter was...dropped b/c Turkey kept escalating its demands, according to another person familiar w/the timeline..."

OMFG. We almost gave in!
@SenRonJohnson "Tillerson has said publicly that the president frequently asked him to do things that were * I L L E G A L * "

Just let that breathe...
@SenRonJohnson “So often, the president would say ‘Here’s what I want to do and here’s how I want to do it,’ and I would have to say to him, ‘Mr President I understand what you want to do but you can’t do it that way,”’ Tillerson said in an on-stage interview w/Bob Schieffer in Texas last yr."
@SenRonJohnson “It violates the law, it violates treaty you know and he just, he got really frustrated when we’d have those conversations.”

@SenRonJohnson "Opulent Lifestyle

Zarrab, a one-time gold trader in his mid-30s, had lived an opulent lifestyle in Turkey, w/a private plane, yacht and a Turkish pop-star wife."

As one does, right?

@SenRonJohnson "Zarrab later pleaded guilty and testified against Mehmet Hakan Atilla, who headed int'l banking at state-owned Turkiye Halk Bankasii AS, known as Halkbank. Zarrab said Erdogan knew/supported the laundering [for] Iran."

Bharara caught them on the phones:

@SenRonJohnson "Erdogan and other senior Turkish officials repeatedly rejected the accusations, saying they were fabrications...."
@SenRonJohnson "Atilla was eventually convicted of helping Iran evade economic sanctions on billions of dollars of oil revenue and served 28 months in U.S. prison before returning to Turkey in July to a hero’s welcome."

Only 28 months, look what he's up to now:

"Turkey has so far managed to avoid U.S. penalties over the sanctions-evasion scheme."

Remember when Trump allowed Turkey to bust sanctions when they bought the Russian missile def sys?

"Despite Erdogan’s demands and Giuliani’s efforts, Zarrab was never sent back to Turkey. "
LOL. "Eyeing" not "ENFORCING"

"Despite Erdogan’s demands and Giuliani’s efforts, Zarrab wasn't back to Turkey. Once he agreed to testify, he was moved to a county jail for safekeeping, and he stayed there until after Atilla’s trial was over. By then, Zarrab’s home and assets in Turkey had been seized..."
Did they get the #TrumpTowerIstanbul condo? How about the SoFlorida properties - because you know they exist.


Link back to the Bloomberg article ✌️

Trump Urged Top Aide to Help Giuliani Client Facing DOJ Charges

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