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Lawmakers question businessman linked to Trump Tower meeting

Lawmakers question businessman linked to Trump Tower meeting

Congressional investigators have questioned a businessman who attended the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpDems fear party is headed to gutter from Avenatti’s sledgehammer approach Trump Jr. to stump in Indiana for Pence’s brother and governor hopeful Donald Trump Jr. blasts Beto O’Rourke: ‘Irish guy pretending to be Hispanic’ MORE and a Russian lawyer, Reuters reports.

Irakly Kaveladze, a Georgian-American businessman who attended the meeting, was questioned by the Senate and House Intelligence committees recently, according to Reuters.

Investigators spoke with Kaveladze after learning that he had met President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from Cruz, O'Rourke's debate showdown Arpaio files libel suit against New York Times IMF's Christine Lagarde delays trip to Middle East MORE in 2013, Reuters reported. The two men were celebrating an agreement to hold the Miss Universe pageant, which Trump owned at the time, in Moscow.

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The investigators wanted to know the extent of Kaveladze’s contact with Trump and his family and what his role was in arranging the Trump Tower meeting, according to Reuters.

Kaveladze’s lawyer, Scott Balber, told Reuters that the businessman had been at both events, but that Kaveladze hadn’t set up the meeting that took place during the presidential campaign.

He added that Kaveladze was planning on translating during the meeting, but hadn’t done so because the Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, had brought her own.

Balber said that the committees were treating Kaveladze as a witness and that he wasn’t being targeted in the probe.

“No one has ever told me that they have any interest in him other than as a witness,” Balber told Reuters.

Reports of the Trump Tower meeting first emerged over the summer. Trump Jr. attended the meeting with then-Trump campaign chairman Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortFusion GPS co-founder pleads the Fifth in Congress, attorney cries McCarthyism Virginia judge calls Manafort’s plea deal ‘highly unusual,’ but is it? Three reasons Mueller may not charge Trump with obstruction MORE and Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerThe Khashoggi disappearance tests US-Saudi relationship The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump sends Pompeo to meet Saudi king | How Trump could work with a Dem House | Trump heads to Florida to view hurricane damage Virginia judge calls Manafort’s plea deal ‘highly unusual,’ but is it? MORE.

Veselnitskaya had promised to provide damaging information about Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBudowsky: Closing message for Democrats Election Countdown: Dems outraise GOP in final stretch | 2018 midterms already most expensive in history | What to watch in second Cruz-O'Rourke debate | Trump raises 0M for reelection | Why Dems fear Avenatti's approach GOP mocks Clinton after minor vehicle collision outside Mendendez campaign event MORE's campaign at the meeting, which has become a key part of special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian election interference.

Trump Jr. has said that nothing came of the meeting.