Trump fundraiser offered plan to help lawyer lift sanctions on Russian companies: report

Trump fundraiser offered plan to help lawyer lift sanctions on Russian companies: report
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An influential fundraiser for President TrumpDonald John TrumpGillibrand backs federal classification of third gender: report Former Carter pollster, Bannon ally Patrick Caddell dies at 68 Heather Nauert withdraws her name from consideration for UN Ambassador job MORE offered to help a Moscow-based lawyer get U.S. sanctions lifted on some Russian companies last year.

Bloomberg News reported Friday that Elliott Broidy, the deputy finance chairman for the Republican National Committee, sent a proposal to Andrei Baev, a lawyer at Chadbourne & Parke LLP, shortly before Trump's inauguration outlining a plan to influence U.S. officials.

Both men acknowledged the offer in statements to Bloomberg, but insisted that the plan never came to fruition. 

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"From the beginning I made it clear that while I would consider trying to help the firm build a team and to put them in touch with some experts, I am not a lobbyist and didn’t plan on becoming one," Broidy told Bloomberg in a statement.

"I also made clear from the beginning that any arrangement we reached would need to be in full compliance with U.S. law. We never made any agreement, and the project never went anywhere. I never contacted any U.S. officials on behalf of Chadbourne or its clients and never had any contact with Chadbourne’s clients."

Broidy sent the proposal after Baev requested his help, according to Bloomberg. The episode illustrates how Russians seeking to evade U.S. sanctions sought the help of Trump's political allies.

Broidy has also entered the spotlight recently for his ties to George Nader, a Lebanese-American businessman and adviser to the de facto ruler of the United Arab Emirates. Nader is said to be cooperating with special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE's investigators, who are examining foreign influence in the White House.

The New York Times reported Wednesday that Nader sought to cultivate Broidy as a tool of influence in Trump's White House.