Judging by the latest words of the prosecution, the legal saga for the Ukrainian-Floridian businessmen Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, associates of Rudy Giuliani, is far from over. Parnas and Fruman, already facing charges for conspiracy, false statements, and falsification of records in connection with alleged campaign finance violations, will “likely” be hit with a superseding indictment, the government says.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas Zolkind said so in court on Monday.
“We think a superseding indictment is likely, but no decision has been made, certainly,” he said.
Zolkind also revealed some potentially troubling news for defendants (and Giuliani) about evidence in possession of the government.
In the SDNY and elsewhere, a superseding indictment — essentially a new indictment updating and replacing the original one — can add new charges and/or *new defendants.* https://t.co/mMaEM0Qnmi
— Elie Honig (@eliehonig) December 2, 2019
Zolkind estimated that the government has well over 9 gigabytes of data from 29 electronic devices, including a satellite phone seized from Fruman’s residence. Extracting data from the devices could take roughly two months if the defendants do not provide their passwords, he explained.
Although Giuliani has not been charged, the wide net prosecutors have cast, combined with a mountain of evidence at their disposal, raises some concerns. At least one of the subpoenas issued by federal prosecutors was issued to Giuliani Partners LLC, the former New York City mayor’s management and security firm. As previously reported by Law&Crime, Giuliani Partners was contracted and paid $500,000 in 2018 by Fraud Guarantee, the company co-founded by Parnas.
It’s not clear at this time what other charges may be handed down, but it is clear what the original indictment said about the alleged offenses committed by Parnas and Fruman:
Parnas and Fruman, the defendants, made additional contributions to federal candidates, joint fundraising committees, and independent expenditure committees that either (i) were intentionally funneled through, and made in the name of, a limited liability corporation to conceal that Parnas and Fruman were the true source of contributions and skirt the federal reporting requirements; or (ii) were reported in Parnas’s name but were funded by Fruman, which allowed Fruman to exceed limits on contributions to candidates or committees to whom he had previously contributed. The defendants further concealed this aspect of the conspiracy by, among other things, making and causing others to make false statements to the [Federal Election Commission].
In addition, Fraud Guarantee co-founder David Correia and Andrey Kukushkin were each charged with one count of conspiracy.
[Images via Fox News/screengrab]