THE TRUMP/RUSSIA TIMELINE: UPDATES THROUGH JULY 3, 2017

These are my latest additions to the Bill Moyers & Company overall Timeline relating to Trump and Russia. You can read the entire Timeline here. The Pence Timeline, Comey Firing Timeline, and Kushner Timeline have also been updated to include relevant entries. 

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  • Dec. 19-20, 2007: Two days after a December 17, 2007 article in The New York Times about Felix Sater’s criminal past, a lawyer deposing Trump in his libel suit against journalist Timothy O’Brien — author of TrumpNation: The Art of Being The Donald — asks, “[W]hat kind of interaction did you have with Mr. Sater prior to the article appearing?” Trump answers, “Not that much, not very much….I would say that my interaction with Felix Sater was, you know, not—was very little.” (p. 411) Discussing Bayrock’s unsuccessful development efforts for Trump in Russia, Trump says, “This was going to be a hotel in Moscow. And I really can say the same things for all of the sites…a hotel in Moscow, a hotel in Kiev, a hotel in Poland, et cetera,…. Bayrock knew the people, knew the investors, and in some cases I believe they were friends of Mr. Arif. And this was going to be Trump International Hotel and Tower in Moscow, Kiev, Istanbul, et cetera, Poland, Warsaw.” (p. 586) Trump is referring to the Bayrock Principal, Tevfik Arif. And a few minutes later, Trump says Arif “did bring people up from Russia…And I believe he brought the people from Moscow up to meet me.” (pp. 589-590) [Added July 3, 2017]

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  • Nov. 16, 2011: Answering deposition questions in a case involving a Fort Lauderdale project, Trump says he has only “limited involvement” with Bayrock Group, which was a Trump tenant “for a period of time.” (pp. 10-11) Trump testifies that he spoke with Felix Sater “for a period of time” when he was an executive with Bayrock. (p. 18) [Added July 3, 2017]

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  • July 2016: According to POLITCO, Felix Sater visits Trump Tower on business that he described as “confidential.” Sater declines to answer whether he’s had recent contact with the Trump Organization or Trump’s children. “I don’t see the relevance of that,” Sater says. When POLITICO asks the Trump campaign about Sater, Trump spokesperson Hope Hicks says, “We are not aware of a contribution or visit to Trump Tower.” Trump Organization General Counsel Alan Garten says that he has no knowledge of Sater’s visit to Trump Tower, that Sater was not advising the Trump Organization, and that the Trump Organization was not seeking business in Russia. [Added July 3, 2017]

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  • Labor Day weekend 2016: According to a June 29, 2017 article in The Wall Street Journal and a July 1, 2017 follow-up piece, wealthy GOP operative Peter W. Smith sets out to get his hands on any emails that were stolen from the private email server that Hillary Clinton used while she was secretary of state. Smith assembles a team of technology experts, lawyers, and a Russian-speaking investigator in Europe to help him find the emails. They identify five groups of hackers, two of which are Russian. In recruiting experts, Smith claims to be in contact with Trump adviser Mike Flynn and Flynn’s son. With one potential collaborator, he shares a packet of opposition research articles with a cover sheet listing Trump campaign officials Steve Bannon, Kellyanne Conway and Sam Clovis. Responding to the 2017 articles in The Wall Street Journal about Smith’s effort, a Trump campaign official says that Smith didn’t work for the campaign, and if Flynn coordinated with Smith, it would have been in his capacity as a private individual. Bannon says that he’s never heard of Smith. Conway says she knew Smith from Republican politics, but never met with him during the campaign. About 10 days after his May 2017 interview with The Wall Street Journal, Smith dies at the age of 81. (Added July 3, 2017)

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  • June 26, 2017: Jared Kushner’s lawyers confirm that he has added a prominent criminal defense trial lawyer, Abbe Lowell, to his legal team. [Added July 3, 2017]
  • June 27, 2017: Paul Manafort registers retroactively as a foreign agent. Between 2012 and 2014 he received more than $17 million from the pro-Russia political party (“Party of Regions”) that dominated Ukraine before its leader, then-President Viktor F. Yanukovych, fled to Moscow amid a popular uprising in 2014. As part of the filing, Manafort discloses that he met in 2013 with Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, an outspoken California Republican known for advocating closer ties between the U.S. and the Kremlin. [Added July 3, 2017]

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