Giuliani associate Lev Parnas discussed Ukraine with Trump at private dinner: report

An indicted associate of Rudy Giuliani, President Trump’s personal attorney, said he discussed Ukraine with the president at a private dinner for super PAC donors in Washington, according to The Washington Post.

Lev Parnas, who, along with his business partner Igor Fruman, has been indicted in connection with an alleged campaign finance fraud scheme, has told associates that the two told Trump at the 2018 dinner in his Washington hotel that then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch was hostile to his interests, the Post reported on Tuesday.

{mosads}Parnas has said Trump responded by suggesting Yovanovitch should be fired, according to the Post, citing people familiar with his account.

After the two men were indicted, Trump denied any connection to them, saying, “It’s possible I have a picture with them because I have a picture with everybody. … I don’t know what they do, but, I don’t know, maybe they were clients of Rudy.”

People who encountered the men indicate the two had interacted with Trump both before and after they met Giuliani in the summer of 2018, according to the Post, including at a 2016 Florida fundraiser.

“It’s just not true that he had no idea who these guys were. He knew Lev particularly,” a former senior administration official told the Post. The two met with then-Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in February, according to Parnas’s lawyer Edward MacMahon Jr., who said they met at the request of Giuliani, who was in turn acting on Trump’s orders.

“There isn’t anything that Parnas did in the Ukraine relative to the Bidens or the 2016 election that he wasn’t asked to do by Giuliani, who was acting on the direction of the president,” MacMahon said.

During the meeting, MacMahon said, the two proposed a state visit in exchange for Poroshenko announcing investigations into both former Vice President Joe Biden’s son and a conspiracy theory about Ukrainian interference in the 2016 elections, the same matters Trump pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky about.

Giuliani has declined to comment on his relationship with the men amid an ongoing investigation but told the Post that Trump already knew them by the time Giuliani met them.

The Hill has reached out to the White House for comment.

Tags Donald Trump Joe Biden Rudy Giuliani

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