An upgraded indictment is likely in the criminal case against two Rudy Giuliani associates with ties to Ukraine, a prosecutor said Tuesday.
A new indictment "is something we are continuing to evaluate", Assistant US Attorney Douglas Zolkind told a judge at a pretrial conference in the case against Parnas, Igor Fruman, David Correia and Andrey Kukushkin, who were charged in October. The prosecutor didn't elaborate on what the new accusations would be or whether others would be charged, but he said later that at least one of the defendants, Parnas, is "under investigation for additional crimes".
Parnas and Fruman are also accused of acting as fixers for Giuliani as he attempted to dig up dirt on Trump rival and 2020 Democratic contender Joe Biden - and of helping to expedite the ouster of former United States ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch.
Prosecutors have obtained thousands of files of phone, bank and Internet service provider records in response to subpoenas, and seized several cell phones, computers, thumb drives and digital tablets from the defendants and their homes after their arrest. But last month, Parnas' new attorney said that he had been prepared to talk with congressional investigators.
The House Intelligence Committee is expected to release its report about President Trump and Ukraine early this week; the House Judiciary Committee has scheduled an open hearing about impeachment for Wednesday.
The arrest of the men has brought new scrutiny to Giuliani, a former New York City mayor who is Donald Trump's personal lawyer.
He was mentioned in the July 25 call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
Former Rep. Pete Sessions, a Texas Republican, also is cooperating with prosecutors after receiving a subpoena for records and other information related to his interactions with Parnas, Fruman and Giuliani. As previously reported by Law&Crime, Giuliani Partners was contracted and paid $500,000 in 2018 by Fraud Guarantee, the company co-founded by Parnas. An attorney for the company, William W. Taylor III, said the firm is complying with the subpoena.
Andrew Favorov, an executive with Ukraine's state-controlled gas company, Naftogaz, has agreed to a voluntary interview with prosecutors, according to his attorney, Lanny Breuer.
Yovanovitch was recalled from her post weeks later amid a smear campaign by Giuliani and others on conservative media outlets.
Trump has called the impeachment probe politically motivated and a witch hunt. The group says it contacted prosecutors with the Southern District of NY and offered voluntarily to cooperate.
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