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A Russian billionaire with ties to Manafort is out on $174 million bail — but lawyer claims his extradition is ‘imminent’

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According to the attorney for a Russian oligarch with extensive ties to former Donald Trump campaign manager Paul Manfort, his client is close to being extradited to the U.S. from Austria, reports the Chicago Tribune.

“Imminent,” and “at risk,” is how attorney Dan Webb described the extradition of his client, Dmitry Firtash, who is currently free on $174  million bond overseas.

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Firtash has battling extradition to the U.S. since his 2014 arrest in Vienna after being accused of masterminding a titanium-mining racket involving Boeing. According to Firtash and his lawyer, he claims he was targeted at the time by the Obama administration as punishment for Putin’s annexation of Crimea.

Firtash’s attorney admitted that fears that his client might “hop on a private plane and head over to Moscow, or to some other country where we can’t extradite him,” in the extradition is approved.

Complicating Firtash’s return to Chicago to face charges based on federal wiretaps, is his connection to Manafort, who is also under investigation by the FBI.

According to USA Today, Firtash has been connected to the Russian mob and has business dealings with Manfort dating back to 2008.

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According to Manafort, he “never had a business relationship” with Firtash.

“There was one occasion where an opportunity was explored. Nothing transpired and no business relationship was ever implemented,” he explained.

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The tangled web of Rudy Giuliani’s associations with questionable characters in the Ukraine scandal

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Washington Post political analyst Philip Bump has created a link analysis of the tangled web President Donald Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani finds himself caught in.

According to the report, Giuliani isn't only linked to Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, the two associates indicted and arrested after lunch with them a few weeks ago. Giuliani is linked to a chorus of people now outed for being involved in the Ukraine scandal.

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White House personnel chief delivers a new blow to Trump: Top DHS candidates are not legally qualified

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President Donald Trump's quest to find an acting replacement for departed Department of Homeland Security chief Kirstjen Nielsen was dealt a significant blow on Monday.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the White House personnel office chief Sean Doocey has informed the president that he doesn't believe either of his top two picks are legally qualified to hold the position.

As the Journal notes, "federal statute that governs vacancies states that acting officials in cabinet-level positions must either be next in line for a position or hold a Senate-confirmed position." Neither Ken Cuccinelli, who heads the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, nor Mark Morgan, who leads Customs and Border Protection, meet those standards, Doocey determined.

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CNBC reporter laments ‘very sad’ decline of Trump: ‘We just heard 20 minutes of nonsense’

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CNBC's John Harwood reacted to President Donald Trump's appearance before the press corps on Monday by calling it "20 minutes of nonsense."

Trump's remarks to the press came during a cabinet meeting where he defended his decision to pull troops out of Syria and insisted that the Emoluments Clause of the U.S. Constitution is "phony."

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