Department of Justice officials on Tuesday charged former President Donald Trump’s friend and ally, Thomas Barrack, Jr. with acting as an agent for the United Arab Emirates between 2016-18, using his access to push the interests of the Middle East nation within the White House.
Barrack, of Santa Monica, California, was arrested Tuesday along with Matthew Grimes of Aspen, Colo., for conspiring to influence candidate, then President Trump’s policy positions regarding the Arab nation, according to the DOJ.
“The defendants repeatedly capitalized on Barrack’s friendships and access to a candidate who was eventually elected President, high-ranking campaign and government officials, and the American media to advance the policy goals of a foreign government without disclosing their true allegiances,” said a spokesperson for Biden’s DOJ.
On Tuesday, a seven-count indictment was unsealed revealing Barrack’s charges.
You can read the entire DOJ charges here:
While Trump was president, Barrack allegedly sought appointment to a senior role in the U.S. government, including the role of Special Envoy to the Middle East where he was in frequent contact with Alshahhi, an agent for the UAE.
According to the agency, the three suspects “took numerous steps in the United States to advance the interests of the UAE.”
In one example, the DOJ alleges that Barrack inserted language supportive of the UAE into one of candidate Trump’s 2016 energy speeches during the presidential campaign.
The agency said that Barrack met with FBI agents on June 20, 2019 and made “numerous false statements to them.
Barrack and Grimes were scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday afternoon in the Central District of California.
Trump and Barrack have been friends for some four decades but have had a bit of a falling out since 2019, according to certain Fake News reporting.
According to the story, Trump became upset with Barrack over published reports about his role in getting foreign leaders to spend money to gain access to Trump and his inner circle.
Matt Herrington, Barrack’s Counsel, told a reporter, “Tom Barrack made himself voluntarily available to investigators from the outset. He is not guilty and will be pleading not guilty today.”
Author: Nolan Sheridan