Top GOP Fundraiser Charged With Acting As Foreign Agent, Is Expected To Plead Guilty

REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

Marlo Safi Culture Reporter
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Elliott Broidy, a former top fundraiser for President Donald Trump and the Republican Party, is expected to plead guilty to conspiracy for failing to disclose that he was acting on behalf of foreign officials when lobbying the US government to drop a criminal investigation, CNN reported.

Prosecutors accused Broidy of violating a foreign lobbying law as part of a scheme to get the Justice Department to drop an investigation into the $4.5 billion embezzlement scandal involving the Malaysia state development fund, known as 1MDB, per CNN. Broidy was lobbying on behalf of Jho Low, a Malaysian businessman who was indicted by the Justice Department two years ago in connection with the fraud.

Prosecutors also allege that Broidy illicitly and unsuccessfully lobbied the Trump Administration for the removal of a Chinese national living in the U.S., and attempted to facilitate a meeting between a Chinese minister and top Trump Administration officials, according to CNN.

The national is understood to be the billionaire Guo Wengui, also known as Miles Kwok and Miles Guo, a critic of China’s government who has sought asylum in the United States, according to CNBC.

Prosecutors detail the scheme in a criminal information filed in federal court in Washington, D.C. Thursday. A criminal information is typically used when a defendant has agreed to plead guilty.

The Justice Department said in the Thursday document that Broidy and Nickie Lum Davis, another person involved in the case, failed to disclose to the Trump Administration or the Justice Department that he was acting on behalf of a foreign national, CNBC reported.

Davis, an American consultant, pleaded guilty in August to violating the foreign lobbying act as part of the Justice Department’s investigation involving 1MDB. Davis and George Higginbotham, a former Justice Department official named in the charging document, have already entered guilty pleas.

Broidy served as the Republican National Committee deputy finance chairman between 2017 and 2018, until revelations that he agreed to pay $1.6 million to a former Playboy model who said Broidy impregnated her. (RELATED: Plot Twist: Now Michael Avenatti Is Getting Sued By A Sex Icon)