House Democrats have released a slew of new photos and documents from Rudy Giuliani’s indicted fixer Lev Parnas, showing his close ties to President Donald Trump’s inner circle.
The dump of images from Parnas’ phone, which he turned over to House Judiciary Committee, shows the businessman with Trump’s children Ivanka and Don Jr, as well as with Don Jr’s own young children.
The images also show a card signed by the president and first lady, thanking Parnas for his ‘friendship and dedication to our cause.’ The card appears to be the type that is sent to campaign donors.
It follows nearly a dozen photos of Parnas and Trump posing together at various events, in spite of Trump’s vehement insistence that he does not know Parnas.
Lev Parnas and Ivanka Trump are seen together in a new batch of photos from Parnas’ phone
Parnas mingles with Don Trump Jr and Trump Jr’s children in one of the photos
Parnas (far right) poses with Jared Kushner, Don Trump Jr, and an unidentified man
The images also show a card signed by the president and first lady, thanking Parnas
Soviet-born Parnas and his partner Igor Fruman were Giuliani’s ‘fixers’ in an alleged scheme to pressure the Ukrainian president to announce an investigation into Joe Biden and his son Hunter. Both Parnas and Fruman now face campaign finance charges.
The new photos also show Trump’s legal team congregating for dinner at the Trump International Hotel in DC, a meeting which Parnas evidently attended.
Trump’s personal attorneys Jay Sekulow, Rudy Giuliani, and Jane Raskin are seen eating with two unidentified men in the undated photos.
On Friday, Trump announced that he had added household names Alan Dershowitz and Kenneth Star to his impeachment legal team.
Dershowitz is a constitutional expert whose expansive views of presidential powers echo those of Trump.
Starr is a veteran of partisan battles in Washington, having led the investigation into Bill Clinton’s affair with a White House intern that brought about that president’s impeachment by the House. Clinton was acquitted at his Senate trial, the same outcome Trump is expecting from the Republican-led chamber.
Parnas was also tight with Trump’s legal team, the photos show. Trump’s personal attorneys Jay Sekulow, Rudy Giuliani, and Jane Raskin are seen above dining at Trump’s DC hotel. The man sitting on the far right has not yet been identified
Left to right: Sekulow, Giuliani, an unknown man, Jane Raskin, and another unknown man are seen dining together in a photo from Parnas’ cell phone camera roll
Lev Parnas and Jared Kushner at Donald Trump’s inauguration celebration in Union Station, Washington D.C., January 2017
The documents released on Friday also include a text message exchange with new information about the apparent surveillance of former US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch.
The screenshots are of undated text messages between Robert Hyde, a Republican congressional candidate in Connecticut, and a foreign number from Belgium.
The Belgian number sends Hyde a screenshot of an official photo of Yovanovitch and writes ‘My contacts are checking,’ adding, ‘I will give you the address next week.’
Hyde replied, ‘Awesome.’
In another series of texts, the Belgian number tells Hyde: ‘Nothing has changed she is still not moving they check today again,’ soon adding, ‘It’s confirmed we have a person inside.’
‘She had visitors,’ the Belgian number, which belongs to an unknown person, texted in another exchange.
Hyde appeared to share the screenshots with Parnas, which is how they wound up on his phone that he turned over to House investigators.
In a video message he posted online, Hyde claims an ‘intel’ source provided him the information he passed on to Parnas.
Hyde, who earlier said he was drinking when he exchanged messages with former Giuliani sidekick Parnas, dismissed the information as ‘just copy and paste bull****.’
Hyde in his video also furnished the name of a person who does not appear in public records as the source of the information he passed on to Parnas. He said he personally had never been to Ukraine.
‘Anthony De Caluwe, go look into him, my other side of my text messages,’ he said in the video, where he gesticulated while seated on a plush brown couch.
Lev Parnas and former Attorney General Jeff Sessions are seen posing together
Lev Parnas poses with with former Marine General John Kelly, then Donald Trump’s chief of staff, at the America First Action SuperPAC Leadership Summit at Trump Hotel Washington D.C. June 18 or 19 2018
Lev Parnas with Donald Trump at the America First Action Superpac Leadership Summit at Trump Hotel Washington D.C. June 18 or 19 2018. Also partially visible right, Donald Trump Jr
Lev Parnas with Florida governor Ron DeSantis and Donald Trump Jr
Parnas sits next to Donald Trump Jr in one of the photos released on Friday
Lev Parnas with letter from Pete Sessions, Texas Republican Congressman to President Trump
‘And why don’t you ask them guys. Because it was just copy and paste bulls*** that from some intel guy probably that was f***ing with me. Trying to set Trump up. And I’m sure if I disappeared or died or they gag-ordered me, they were going to use me as a smoking gun. Some bulls*** like I have these Ukrainian ties,’ he said.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday broke nearly 72 hours of silence over alleged surveillance and threats to the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, saying he believed the allegations would prove to be wrong but that he had an obligation to evaluate and investigate the matter.
In interviews with conservative radio hosts, Pompeo said he had no knowledge of the allegations until earlier this week when congressional Democrats released documents from an associate of President Donald Trump’s personal attorney suggesting that Marie Yovanovitch was being watched. He also said he did not know and had never met Lev Parnas, the associate of Rudy Giuliani who made the claims.
Pompeo, who was traveling in California when the documents were released, had been harshly criticized by lawmakers and current and former diplomats for not addressing the matter. The documents provided by Parnas suggested there may have been a threat to Yovanovitch shortly before she was abruptly recalled last spring.
New documents released by the House Judiciary Committee show a person from a Belgian number feeding information about former ambassador Marie Yovanovitch
Republican congressional candidate Robert Hyde (above) put out a video where he said a source provided him ‘intel’ on former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, but denied impropriety and blasted Democrats
‘We will do everything we need to do to evaluate whether there was something that took place there,’ he said in a radio interview with Tony Katz, an Indianapolis-based broadcaster. ‘I suspect that much of what´s been reported will ultimately prove wrong, but our obligation, my obligation as secretary of state, is to make sure that we evaluate, investigate. Any time there is someone who posits that there may have been a risk to one of our officers, we´ll obviously do that.’
‘It is always the case at the Department of State that we do everything we can to ensure that our officers, not only our ambassadors but our entire team, has the security level that´s appropriate,’ Pompeo said.
‘We do our best to make sure that no harm will come to anyone, whether that was what was going on in our embassy in Baghdad last week or the work that was going on in Kyiv up and through the spring of last year when Ambassador Yovanovitch was there, and in our embassy in Kyiv even today,’ he said.