Former Trump fundraiser charged in covert lobbying effort

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Elliott Broidy poses for a photo at an event in New York in 2008. Federal prosecutors have cast a wide net in their investigation of top GOP fundraiser Broidy, probing his business dealings around the world as part of an inquiry into the Los Angeles businessman’s efforts to cash in on his close connections to President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/David Karp, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Elliott Broidy, a fundraiser for President Donald Trump and the Republican Party, has been charged in an illicit lobbying campaign aimed at getting the Trump administration to drop an investigation into the multibillion-dollar looting of a Malaysian state investment fund.

Broidy is the latest person accused by the Justice Department of participating in the covert lobbying effort, which also sought to arrange for the return of a Chinese dissident living in the U.S. A consultant, Nickie Lum Davis, agreed to plead guilty in federal court in Hawaii in August.

The case was filed this week in federal court in Washington, D.C.

Prosecutors allege that Broidy worked with Davis and others to get the Justice Department to abandon its pursuit of billions of dollars that officials say were pilfered from 1MDB, a Malaysian wealth fund that was established more than a decade ago to accelerate the country’s economic development.

The effort was done on behalf of a fugitive Malaysian financier, Jho Low, who has been charged in the U.S. with conspiring to launder billions of dollars from the fund. He has denied all wrongdoing.

Broidy has been a top fundraiser for Trump but resigned in 2018 from his role as deputy chairman of the Republican National Committee after it was revealed that he paid $1.6 million to a Playboy Playmate with whom he had an extramarital affair.


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