A Brooklyn grand jury is investigating the foreign business deals of GOP fundraiser Elliott Broidy, the Associated Press reported Monday morning.
The Wall Street Journal first reported last month that a Brooklyn federal grand jury had sent the Trump inaugural committee a subpoena for documents relating to Broidy and some of his purported clients.
But the AP report adds a new twist to the saga by revealing that the probe seems to focus on potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, a law that prohibits U.S. citizens from providing “things of value” to foreign government officials in exchange for business.
Trump’s inaugural faces scrutiny from a separate probe by Manhattan federal prosecutors, who are reportedly interested in the inaugural committee’s compliance with a ban on foreign contributions. A number of foreign officials appeared at the event, and one political consultant has already admitted to funnelling foreign cash to the committee in exchange for tickets for Ukrainian oligarchs.
Broidy, a longtime GOP fundraiser who served on Trump’s inaugural committee, attracted attention in part due to a cache of emails released last year, which appeared to show the internal business dealings of his defense firm, Circinus LLC. The messages appeared to show Circinus officials attempting to bring potential Romanian and Angolan government clients to the Trump inaugural.
Broidy has vigorously denied any allegations of wrongdoing. His lawyers have claimed that the leaked emails were doctored, and alleged that he is the victim of a Qatari-backed hacking campaign.
The AP quotes Broidy’s attorneys as saying that neither Broidy nor his global security firm Circinus ever had a contract or exchange of money with “any Romanian government agency, proxy or agent.” The report also quotes his attorneys as saying that a 2016 agreement between Angola and Circinus was completely unrelated to the inaugural or to Broidy’s role on the inaugural committee.