Bangladesh probes US lobby firm's work on behalf of alleged war criminal

Hartley also pointed out that former Rep. Marty Russo (D-Ill.), who left the firm after Democrats lost control of the House in 2010, did not work on the contract despite being cited in media reports. Mir Quasem Ali paid Cassidy $180,000 from Nov. 15, 2010 through March 31, 2011, according to filings under the Lobbying Disclosure Act; his brother then replaced him as the firm's client and paid $320,000 from April 25, 2011 through April 30, 2012 — much less than the $25 million reportedly alleged by Bangladesh's Anti-Corruption Commission.

Cassidy is expected to soon file further documents for work done for Mir Masum Ali on behalf of his brother since April, notably in the run-up to a July 19 congressional hearing by the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, which examined reports of torture, arbitrary arrest, judicial corruption and forced disappearances by security forces under the government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

“While I support and applaud the Bangladesh government’s desire to bring justice to those responsible for committing atrocities in the [1971] conflict, I am concerned that the proceedings be conducted in a fair, transparent manner,” Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) said during the hearing.