Giuliani pressed Trump, Tillerson for Turkish prisoner swap in Oval Office meeting: report

President TrumpDonald TrumpSenators introduce bipartisan infrastructure bill in rare Sunday session Gosar's siblings pen op-ed urging for his resignation: 'You are immune to shame' Sunday shows - Delta variant, infrastructure dominate MORE's lawyer Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiCapitol insurrection hearing exposes Trumpworld delusions DOJ declines to back Mo Brooks's defense against Swalwell's riot lawsuit Bob Dole: 'I'm a Trumper' but 'I'm sort of Trumped out' MORE reportedly used a White House meeting with Trump and then-Secretary of State Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonWant to evaluate Donald Trump's judgment? Listen to Donald Trump House passes legislation to elevate cybersecurity at the State Department Biden's is not a leaky ship of state — not yet MORE in 2017 to push for the U.S. to drop charges on Reza Zarrab, a client of his with ties to Turkey's government.

CNN reported Thursday that Giuliani pressed Trump and Tillerson to support a deal that would drop U.S. prosecution of Zarrab for allegedly violating U.S. sanctions on Iran in exchange for Turkey's release of Andrew Brunson, an American pastor detained in the country a year earlier amid a coup attempt.


Tillerson reportedly informed others, including then-White House chief of staff John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE, of the idea after the meeting, which he said he could not support.

News of Giuliani's involvement comes just days after it was reported that Trump himself at one time pressured Tillerson to convince the Justice Department to drop the charges, to which Zarrab later pleaded guilty.

Zarrab has since said that Turkey's president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, was aware of an international money-funneling scheme that resulted in funds being laundered for Iran. The Turkish leader has denied this charge.

Giuliani reportedly pressed U.S. officials several times unsuccessfully for the charges to be dropped ahead of his client's guilty plea.

The reports come as Giuliani faces intense scrutiny for his work on behalf of Trump, which has allowed him to remain a private citizen while attempting to dig up dirt on Trump's enemies, including former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenGOP report on COVID-19 origins homes in on lab leak theory READ: The .2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act Senators introduce bipartisan infrastructure bill in rare Sunday session MORE.

The former New York City mayor's work to discredit Biden, particularly his and Trump's efforts to spur a Ukrainian investigation into the Democratic front-runner, have become the center of an impeachment inquiry launched by the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives.