Lev Parnas, an indicted Ukrainian-Floridian businessman and associate of Rudy Giuliani’s who has been anxious to tell Congress what he remembers, got a federal judge’s blessing on Friday.
Parnas trotted the globe in search of dirt on the Bidens only to be abandoned by President Donald Trump. This apparently angered and upset Parnas. On Friday, Obama-appointed U.S. District Judge Paul Oetken granted Parnas’s request to give the Rep. Adam Schiff-led House Intelligence Committee iPhone and documentary evidence seized by the government in Parnas’s Southern District of New York criminal case.
“Granted. Defendant Lev Parnas may produce the materials referenced herein to the United States House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence,” Oetken ordered. The judge previously signaled that he would grant the request.
Parnas’s attorney, Joseph Bondy, noted before that the government did not object to sharing of documents seized from Parnas’s home and the contents extracted from his client’s iPhone 11.
Bondy said the information was relevant and responsive to a congressional subpoena, and that it was important that congressional investigators had it so they could “corroborate the strength of Mr. Parnas’s potential testimony.”
“These materials fall within the scope of the September 30, 2019 letter request and October 10, 2019 subpoena of the United States House of Representatives’ Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI), in connection with the presidential impeachment inquiry,” Bondy wrote.
“At present, we do not know whether we intend to produce the entirety of the materials, or a subset filtered for either privilege or relevancy. If a subset, we will inform the Court and Government as to what we have actually have produced,” he added.
As Law&Crime noted before, a bit of potential testimony that Congress will no doubt attempt to corroborate involves House Intel Ranking Member Devin Nunes (R-Calif.). You may remember that Bondy gave information to CNN that triggered a Nunes lawsuit.
Nunes sued over claims that he went to Austria in 2018 and met Viktor Shokin, and communicated with Parnas in Dec. 2018 “around the time of the ‘Vienna Trip.’” Nunes and his attorney said the trip “never happened.” Shokin is the former Ukrainian Prosecutor General that Joe Biden bragged about getting fired. Republican Senators also believed Shokin was corrupt and wanted him ousted.
Calls logs released in the House Intel Committee’s impeachment report showed that Nunes, Parnas, and Giuliani spoke by phone. The logs from April 12, 2019 showed Parnas called John Solomon — the then-Hill columnist who brought to the mainstream the Joe-Biden-Hunter Biden-Burisma narrative pushed by President Trump, Shokin, Giuliani, Parnas, and more. The logs also showed Parnas had a call with Nunes that lasted for more than eight minutes. Parnas then called Solomon back.
The “-1” number that showed up in logs appears to belong to the president.
Bondy previously said that, in light of the call records, Nunes should have recused himself from the House Intelligence Committee’s impeachment hearings.
“Hey @DevinNunes —Lev remembers what you spoke about. You don’t remember? #LetLevSpeak,” Bondy warned.
Bondy, in a Friday tweet perhaps meant to put Nunes on notice, repeated #LetLevSpeak and #LevRemembers.
“Earlier this morning, the Court granted Lev Parnas’ request to allow production of certain materials to HPSCI in the Impeachment Inquiry, which we are doing. As the Government produces additional materials, we will seek similar judicial Orders. #LetLevSpeak #LevRemembers,” Bondy said.
After their October arrests, Parnas and fellow Giuliani associate Igor Fruman were each hit with two counts of conspiracy, one count of making false statements, and one count of falsification of records. They were instrumental in Giuliani’s efforts to convince the Ukrainian government to commit publicly to investigations of Joe Biden, Hunter Biden and Burisma. The charges are related to a “scheme to funnel foreign money” to Republican candidates (alleged campaign finance violations).
David Correia, a co-founder of Fraud Guarantee, and Andrey Kukushkin were also ensnared in the criminal probe. Correia and Kukushkin were charged with one count of conspiracy. All defendants have pleaded not guilty.
Prosecutors are also aware of and concerned about Parnas’s connection to Dmytro Firtash, a Putin-connected Ukrainian oligarch involved in efforts to dig up dirt on the Bidens. Firtash is under indictment for bribery in the U.S., but has not been extradited.
Also on Friday, Oetken officially granted attorney Edward MacMahon’s motion to withdraw from Parnas’s case, meaning that Bondy is now the only attorney representing Parnas.
In that motion, MacMahon said Parnas’s “apparent ability to fund his defense has diminished,” and that Bondy was “prepared to assume all aspects of Mr. Parnas’ defense.”
Colin Kalmbacher contributed to this report.
[image via ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images]
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