Citibank, JP Morgan Chase, and Morgan Stanley filed “suspicious activity reports” concerning large sums of money moved between Russians involved in the notorious Trump Tower meeting, Buzzfeed News reported Friday.
The same day in June of 2016 that Donald Trump, Jr. was offered dirt on Hillary Clinton as “part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump” the money began to flow.
Billionaire real estate developer Aras Agalarov ended up moving $3.3 million to Irakly “Ike” Kaveladze.
“Although the documents do not directly link the $3.3 million to the meeting, they show that officials at three separate banks raised red flags about the funds,” Buzzfeed explained.
The suspicious activity reporters were sent to the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.
“None of these transactions was discovered until 2017, after the New York Times revealed the Trump Tower meeting. Shortly after those reports, investigators asked financial institutions to look back at their accounts to learn how money flowed among the people who planned and attended the meeting: Agalarov; Kaveladze; Agalarov’s pop star son, Emin; their employee, Rob Goldstone, who sent the original email to Trump Jr.; and others,” Buzzfeed continued. “To unearth connections between some of their accounts, banks took an extraordinary step: They invoked a provision of the Patriot Act — a post-9/11 law that included new tools to track money laundering and terrorist financing.”
Both men denied wrongdoing, through a shared attorney.
“What is suspicious, or insidious, about a billionaire who pays his employee in the US to pay his business or domestic bills?” argued Scott Balber, an attorney for Agalarov and Kaveladze. “This looks like complete nonsense.”