Tiger Beat on the Potomac tells us…
A federal grand jury indicted Mariia Butina on Tuesday on charges of conspiracy and acting as a foreign agent, adding a new charge against the Russian national, who was arrested over the weekend in Washington and accused of playing a part in a secret Russian attempt to influence U.S. politics.
The indictments accuse Butina of: cozying up to GOP politicians, the RNC, and the NRA, and attempting to influence them and to connect them with members of the Russian government.
Butina may not be the only one arrested and charged, as there are several unnamed American persons in the indictments (cough Rohrabacher cough)
Now, the article in the Guardian that Scissorhead Osirisopto pointed us to begins:
The Las Vegas hotel ballroom was crowded, but the Russian redhead caught Donald Trump’s eye. “Yes, ma’am,” he said, inviting a question.It was July 2015, and Maria Butina wanted to know what Trump, then a month into his unlikely campaign for the White House, planned to do about US relations with her country. Trump had good news.
“I believe I would get along very nicely with Putin,” he said.
Butina, then 27, was asked on the sidelines of the event why she had travelled all the way to Nevada for a gathering of libertarians and conservatives. “I would like to know more, and to bring this knowledge to Russia,” she said casually. “I hope it will be useful for my country.”
Butina is not yet connected with Comrade Trump’s 2016 Goat Rodeo campaign and that the indictments were not the work of Special Counsel Robert Mueller. But there is this:
“[Butina and Alexander Torshin, and more on him in a moment] tried to get access to Trump himself in May 2016, but had to make do with his son. The Trump Organization confirmed that Donald Jr met Torshin during the NRA convention in Louisville, Kentucky, but tried to downplay the significance of their discussion.”
If the charges are true, then the Russians penetrated (heh! See what I did there!) the GOP and lists a rogues gallery of ninnies and mouth-breathers she managed to meet:
- John Bolton (it is kinda vague, though he did record a gun video for the Russian version of the NRA)
- Wayne LaPierre
- Gov. Bobby Jindal
- Sen. Rick Santorum
- Paul Erickson (a conservative political operative and veteran NRA member based in South Dakota)
- Gov. Scott Walker
- Sheriff David Clark
- Pete Brownell (mysteriously resigned past president of the NRA)
- David Keene (past president of the NRA)
Back to the article:
An FBI agent who investigated Butina said in a court filing she tried to develop secret back channels with American politicians that could “penetrate the US national decision-making apparatus to advance the agenda of the Russian federation”.
You mean just like the secret phone line that Comrade Trump’s Fratsputin, Jared Kushner, tried to set up? Hmmm…
Butina is a lifetime member of the NRA, as is her Kremlin handler Alexander Torshin, who is a senior official at Russia’s central bank. Torshin is accused of directing Butina’s operations.
Torshin also was a member of the upper house of the Russian parliament. Torshin has been convicted of money laundering in Spain. Torshin is also suspected of being in the Russian Mafia. The NRA donated $30M Ameros to the Trump campaign, which is more than they gave to any other presidential committee. It seems possible that the 30M large could be money laundered campaign contributions from a foreign power.
If there was a gusher of money from Russia to the NRA to Comrade Trump, Torshin is exactly the comrade for the job.
So, like other investigations we’ve seen, Butina is the small fish who, if she flips, leads to the larger fish, which then leads to the big fish, our orange-mouth bass.
“Butina denies any wrongdoing. Her attorney, Robert Driscoll, said she was a legitimate college graduate and aspiring businesswoman who happened to be Russian. She “intends to defend her rights vigorously and looks forward to clearing her name”, he said.”
So she’s in a lose-lose scenario: US conviction or flips and has a nice cup of polonium tea.
Returning to our earlier conversation: it’s clear to me that Comrade Trump has the luck of the Irish. His treasonous remarks in Finland drowned this story. This should be a bombshell, but everyone is distracted.
crossposted from Mock Paper Scissors, "The Spy Who Loved Pee"