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Former Giuliani associates plead not guilty to new fraud charges

Former Giuliani associates plead not guilty to new fraud charges
© Alexandria Sheriff's Office

A pair of former associates of Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiState sanctions Ukrainian billionaire over alleged corruption Newsmax adds Andrew Giuliani as a contributor Trump sued by Democrat over mob attack on Capitol MORE, President TrumpDonald TrumpUS, South Korea reach agreement on cost-sharing for troops Graham: Trump can make GOP bigger, stronger, or he 'could destroy it' Biden nominates female generals whose promotions were reportedly delayed under Trump MORE’s personal attorney, pleaded not guilty to fraud charges on Monday.

Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman both pleaded not guilty when asked by Judge Paul Oetken how the pleaded.

A third defendant, Andrey Kukushkin, also pleaded not guilty. All three men are accused of corporate fraud through their company Fraud Guarantee.

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The company claimed to insure investors against corporate fraud, but prosecutors claim the men lied to investors on the strength of their company and what would be accomplished with their money CNN reports.

Giuliani was reportedly hired to consult for the company for $500,000.

The new outlet notes that the trio was also accused of making illegal campaign donations to local and federal politicians in various states in order to garner support for a marijuana business. The men pleaded not guilty in this case as well.

Parnas and Fruman were involved in Trump’s impeachment trials. They, along with Giuliani, persuaded Ukraine to investigate President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenLawmakers, activists remember civil rights icons to mark 'Bloody Sunday' Fauci predicts high schoolers will receive coronavirus vaccinations this fall Biden nominates female generals whose promotions were reportedly delayed under Trump MORE’s son Hunter Biden. The two associates allegedly set up meetings between Giuliani and Ukraine officials and tried to find incriminating information on then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie YovanovitchMarie YovanovitchBlinken tells State Department staff 'I have your back' Trump has discussed possible pardons for three eldest children, Kushner: report Former Giuliani associates plead not guilty to new fraud charges MORE.

In September, the district attorney of Audrey Strauss, the acting U.S. attorney general for the Southern District of New York accused Parnass and Fruman of "soliciting a foreign national to make donations and contributions in connection with federal and state elections," as well as, "aiding and abetting the making of donations and contributions by a foreign national in connection with federal and state elections.” 

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The former Giuliani associates will have to stand trial for these charges, though the trial date has been pushed back to some time in 2021.

Giuliani's connection with these men brought scrutiny onto his business practices, CNN notes.

On Tuesday the New York Times reported that Giuliani had discussed the possibility of receiving a presidential pardon from Trump before he leaves office in January. Giuliani has not been charged with any crimes and he denied the report claiming the conversation never occurred,