Report: Giuliani Raids Linked to Ukraine Work

Sources say firing of US ambassador to Ukraine is investigation's main focus
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 30, 2021 6:26 AM CDT
Report: Giuliani Probe Is Focused on Diplomat's Firing
New York City Police officers walk out of the apartment building where former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani resides, Wednesday, April 28, 2021, in New York.   (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Rudy Giuliani's successful push to have the American ambassador to Ukraine removed may have come back to haunt him—again. Sources tell the New York Times that the effort to oust Marie Yovanovitch, which was raised during Donald Trump's first impeachment trial, is a main focus of the investigation that led to raids on Giuliani's home and office Wednesday. Yovanovitch was abruptly fired in May 2019. The sources say federal investigators suspect that Giuliani pushed for Yovanovitch's removal not just on behalf of Trump, but on behalf of Ukrainian officials and oligarchs who also wanted her out. Insiders say one of the warrants for Giuliani's electronic devices cited the Foreign Agents Registration Act, which requires people lobbying the government on behalf of foreign officials to register with the Justice Department.

In a statement denouncing the raids, Giuliani attorney Robert Costello said the warrants included "one indication of an alleged incident of failure to register as a foreign agent." Biden told NBC Thursday that he has not been briefed on the Giuliani investigation and did not have advance knowledge of the raids. He said the Justice Department was politicized under Trump, but he has pledged not to interfere in any federal investigations. "The Justice Department is the people's lawyer, not the president's lawyer," Biden said. (Note: This summary originally included reporting by the Washington Post that the FBI briefed Giuliani in late 2019 that he was being targeted by Russian intelligence agents working to spread disinformation on Joe Biden ahead of the election. However, the Post later corrected its story to remove the assertion Giuliani received such a briefing.)

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