Gov: Giuliani associates not entitled to raid data for trial

NEW YORK (AP) — Prosecutors on Wednesday said they don’t plan to use materials from recent raids on Rudy Giuliani’s home and office at an upcoming trial of two of his associates and another man on charges that they made illegal campaign contributions.

Federal prosecutors urged a judge to reject a request by lawyers in that case to force the government to disclose materials seized from Giuliani, ex-President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer, and others.

They said the warrants used in the raids did not authorize a search for evidence related to a case brought against Lev Parnas, Igor Fruman and Andrey Kukushkin. All three have pleaded not guilty and are free on bail.

“The Government will not use any of the materials seized” during the Giuliani and related searches in the 2019 case against the trio at their upcoming October trial, prosecutors wrote.

Parnas, Fruman and Kukushkin, a Ukrainian-born U.S. citizen, are charged in a scheme to make illegal campaign donations to local and federal politicians in New York, Nevada and other states to try to win support for a new recreational marijuana business.

In a letter dated last Thursday but released publicly on Tuesday, attorney Joseph Bondy, representing Parnas, said he was writing on behalf of all defense counsel to get help from the judge in pursuit of information about the execution of search warrants on Giuliani and another lawyer who has represented Trump, Victoria Toensing.

The letter also accidentally disclosed that prosecutors in 2019 sought the electronic messages of two ex-Ukrainian government officials and a Ukrainian businessman in its probe of Giuliani’s dealings in that country.

Seized communications included an email account believed to belong to the former prosecutor general of Ukraine, Yuriy Lutsenko, a key figure in Giuliani’s efforts to press Ukraine for an investigation into then-presidential candidate Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, the letter said.

Prosecutors are examining Giuliani’s ties to Ukraine and whether he violated a federal law that governs lobbying on behalf of foreign countries or entities. No charges have been filed.

Giuliani has insisted that his activities in Ukraine were conducted on behalf of Trump, not any foreign entity or person.

Parnas and Fruman face charges that they made sizable contributions while trying to get Americans interested in investigating Biden’s son in Ukraine. Parnas and Fruman worked with Giuliani to try to convince Ukraine to announce a probe of Biden. Giuliani, a Republican, has said he knew nothing about the donations.

Trump’s efforts to press Ukraine for an investigation of the Bidens led the House to impeach Trump, though he was acquitted by the Senate.

Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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