In recent news, four Ukrainian citizens tried to acquire a license allowing them to operate a marijuana business in Nevada. In a 20 page indictment which was made public by the U.S, District Court reveals that the same men who applied for the marijuana business licence made campaign contributions to the Nevada Republicans. Among the four Ukranian men are Igor Fruman and Lev Parnas, who are two known associates of President Donald Trump, and have been involved in other allegations including Trump’s attorney, Rudy Giuliani. The other two partners include David Correia and Andrew Kukushkin, a Ukranian-born U.S citizen. The four men are currently facing allegations of conducting a scheme to evade campaign finance laws.
Lobbying for pot
The men missed the pot sales license in Nevada application deadline September of last year before they decided to have a chat with the governor about changing the rules to let them apply. The indictment mentions each of the four men contributed $10,000 to the Republic campaigns of Adam Lazal as well as the state attorney general who lost in the elections. The money also contributed to the campaign of Wesley Duncan, Laxalt’s former top deputy who ran for attorney general. Laxalt stated spokesman Rover Uithoven claiming that “Until this morning, like everyone else, Adam was unaware of the illegal activity and he intends to return the donation.” In another statement, Duncan says “I had no idea Mr Fruman was acting unlawfully.”
Igor Fruman and Lev Parnas charged on four counts
According to the Wall Street Journal, Igor Fruman and Lev Parnas were previously “charged with four counts, including conspiracy, falsification of records and lying to the Federal Election Commission about their political donations, which included a $325,000 donation through a limited liability company to a super PAC formed to support Mr. Trump, according to the indictment.” The charges against the two men tie them to efforts of influencing US politics and policy by using foreign funds. It is not a hidden fact that Parnas and Fruman spent most of last year working alongside Rudy Giuliani, President Trump’s legal arm. The two men “had no significant prior history of political donations” until last year, according to federal prosecutors. Parnas previously worked as a stockbroker and an entrepreneur of sorts in southern Florida, where he faced multiple legal battles for allegedly stiffing his creditors. Fruman’s business interests largely lay in Ukraine, where he owned a hotel and an export business. It is worth mentioning that when asked about Igor Fruman and Lev Parnas, President Trump said: “I don’t know those gentlemen.”