July 27, 2021

Billionaire and Trump advisor Tom Barracks pleaded not guilty yesterday to federal charges that he illegally lobbied the White House on behalf of the United Arab Emirates Via the Daily Beast:

As Barrack, 74, entered the Brooklyn courthouse, a protester outside hoisted a sign that read “DIRTY TRAITOR” and shouted, “It’s our democracy! It’s our democracy, not yours! Traitor! It’s our democracy, you asshole!”

A seven-count indictment accuses Barrack, 74, Aspen resident Matthew Grimes, 27, and UAE national Rashid Sultan Rashid Al Malik Alshahhi, 43, of “acting and conspiring to act as agents of the UAE” in an attempt to influence the policy positions of the Trump administration. Barrack, the founder of investment firm Colony Capital and a staunch Trump ally and friend, is also facing charges of obstruction of justice and making false statements. Barrack was released from jail last Friday after posting a $250 million bond, which was secured by $5 million in cash, some $21 million in securities, and Barrack’s California home.

No matter what happens at trial, I take some small comfort when these wheeler dealers have to face the rude judgment of the hoi polloi. How humiliating it must be for someone who not long ago was rubbing elbows with presidents and kings to be yelled at in the streets like any other citizen.

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