Trump’s Ally Tom Barrack Acquitted On Charges Of Illegal Lobbying
Tom Barrack, a longtime friend and adviser to former President Donald Trump, was acquitted Friday on charges that he operated as an illegal lobbyist for the United Arab Emirates and lied about that to authorities.
Barrack, a 75-year-old Los-Angeles based investor, was accused by prosecutors of using his influence on Trump to promote the interests of the Emirates in the White House and in the media.
He faced nine counts, including acting as an agent of a foreign government without notifying the attorney general and making false statements.
After a seven-day trial and two days of jury deliberation, Barrack was acquitted on all counts. Matthew Grimes, a former assistant to Barrack who was also on trial, was acquitted on both counts he faced.
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During the trial, prosecutors argued that evidence showed how Barrack worked to gain influence over the Trump administration. They cited an email sent by him to Jared Kushner — the former president’s son-in-law and adviser — to amplify his importance.
“The defendants unlocked the back door of the American political system — its campaigns, its media, its government — to the U.A.E.,” Ryan Harris, one of the prosecutors, said in his closing argument Tuesday.
Barrack, who decided to take the witness stand, argued that his dealings with the Emirates were related to his work as a businessman. He told the jury he wanted to weave a “web of tolerance” by leveraging his experience working in the Middle East.
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