Giuliani associates Fruman and Parnas plead not guilty to campaign finance charges
Posted October 23, 2019 6:02 a.m. EDT
Updated October 23, 2019 11:48 a.m. EDT
CNN — Two men who have served as Rudy Giuliani's conduit to Ukraine pleaded not guilty in Manhattan federal court Wednesday to charges that they funneled foreign money to US campaign coffers.
Igor Fruman and Lev Parnas were indicted earlier this month on four counts, including conspiracy to violate the ban on foreign donations to federal and state elections, making false statements and falsifying records to the Federal Election Commission.
The two are linked closely with Giuliani, President Donald Trump's personal attorney. For months, they have aided Giuliani's effort to compile what he has claimed is damaging information on Trump's political rival, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, whose son, Hunter Biden, was on the board of the Ukranian energy company Burisma.
Belarus-born Fruman and Ukraine-born Parnas, both US citizens and Florida residents, introduced Giuliani to former and current Ukrainian officials, and Parnas' company, Boca Raton-based Fraud Guarantee, paid Giuliani $500,000, he told Reuters.
Giuliani himself is a subject of the ongoing investigation by the federal prosecutors who charged Fruman and Parnas, a probe that is examining Giuliani's Ukrainian business dealings, CNN has reported.
Fruman and Parnas' co-defendants, David Correia and Andrey Kukushkin, who are each charged with one count of conspiracy, were arraigned last week and pleaded not guilty.
This story is breaking and will be updated.