Trump backs ‘legendary’ Giuliani amid reports of investigation into possible lobbying violations

President Trump on Saturday gave his backing to Rudy Giuliani, his personal attorney, after reports that the former New York City mayor is being investigated by federal prosecutors for possibly lobbying violations in relation to his work in Ukraine.

“So now they are after the legendary ‘crime buster’ and greatest Mayor in the history of NYC, Rudy Giuliani,” Trump tweeted. “He may seem a little rough around the edges sometimes, but he is also a great guy and wonderful lawyer.”

The New York Times reported Friday night that prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating whether Giuliani broke lobbying laws in his dealings with Ukraine. They are reportedly examining Giuliani’s efforts to oust then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch.

Earlier this week, two associates of Giuliani were indicted for campaign finance violations. Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman are accused of using a limited liability company to make political contributions related to American elections, in violation of FEC prohibitions against contributions from foreign nationals.

Both men have been linked to Giuliani’s efforts to conduct investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden’s, and his son Hunter’s, dealings in the country — particularly connected to Hunter’s ties to a Ukrainian gas company. Giuliani has acknowledged that both men “logistically helped” in his collection of evidence against Hunter Biden, and that they helped connect him with former Ukrainian top prosecutors Viktor Shokin and Yuriy Lutsenko.

The arrests came amid a growing impeachment inquiry related to President Trump’s July 25 phone call with Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. In that call, Trump asked the premier to “look into” the allegations about Biden. Opponents have accused Trump of withholding military aid to pressure the Ukrainians into investigating a political rival — something Trump denies.

Rebecca M | BNN News

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