Giuliani Associate Petitions Court to Hand Over Documents That Could Be Vital in Dems' Impeachment Inquiry

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Posted: Dec 30, 2019 9:57 PM

The attorney for Lev Parnas, one of Rudy Giuliani's associates, on Monday sent a letter asking a federal judge for permission to hand over documents and data from Parnas' iPhone to House Democrats. Parnas wants the information to be handed over to the House Permanent Select Committee on intelligence to use as part of their impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

According to Parnas' attorney, it's "essential" for the Committee to review the materials "to corroborate the strength of Mr. Parnas's potential testimony." 

Parnas' team plans to produce the documents on Tuesday per the judge's approval. 

The judge in the case, Paul Oetken, an Obama appointee, has previously said he would approve a request to share materials with Congress, Bloomberg reported. 

Parnas is a Soviet-born American who was indicted on conspiracy and campaign finance-related violations and has pleaded not guilty to his criminal charges. 

From CNN (emphasis mine):

Parnas, a Soviet-born American who worked with Giuliani to push claims of Democratic corruption in Ukraine, was charged in New York federal court in early October with conspiracy and campaign finance-related violations and has pleaded not guilty to his criminal charges. The Manhattan federal prosecutors continue to consider other charges related to his case, though their exact approach is unknown.

The same day Parnas and Igor Fruman, another Giuliani associate, were arrested in October, three House committees leading the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump subpoenaed the two men -- demanding they turn over documents related to communications with the White House, Ukrainian officials and Giuliani by October 16.

The subpoenas requested Parnas and Fruman provide documents and communications related to efforts to persuade the Ukrainians to investigate Burisma, the energy company that placed former Vice President Joe Biden's son Hunter on its board, as well as the ouster of US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, for which Parnas and Fruman had pushed. There's no evidence of wrongdoing by Joe or Hunter Biden in Ukraine.

It's unclear how much information could be revealed by Parnas' iPhone, or how much it will help Democrats' case against the President. Earlier this month, the House voted to impeach Trump, charging him with abuse of power for withholding nearly $400 million in US military aid from Ukraine and a White House meeting while pressuring Ukraine's president to investigate a Joe Biden, a potential political rival, and obstruction of Congress for thwarting the House's investigative efforts.

Remember: Adam Schiff's Intelligence Committee report disclosed phone calls between Rep. Devin Nunes, (R-CA), Giuliani, Jay Sekulow, reporter John Solomon, Parnas and the White House. The only details we know, based on the report, are the phone numbers and how long the calls lasted. We don't know the content of those calls. Parnas' iPhone data could change that.