A federal magistrate in Los Angeles ordered former US President Donald Trump’s inaugural chair Tom Barrack, 74, released from custody on Friday on $250 million (€212 million) bail while he awaits trial on charges of working as an agent of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to lobby Trump and then lying about it to the FBI.
In addition to the $250 million bail, conditions set for his release include surrendering his passports, wearing a GPS tracking device, a 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew and a limitation on travel between southern California, where he was arrested, and New York City, where he was indicted.
Barrack raised $107 million (€91 million) for Trump’s inauguration. The inaugural committee came under scrutiny for lavish spending and the presence of foreign officials and wheeler-dealers.
A seven-count indictment and two alleged accomplices
Barrack was charged in a federal court Tuesday in Brooklyn with conspiring to influence Trump’s foreign policy on behalf of the UAE during the 2016 presidential campaign as well as when Trump was in power. Barrack was a frequent guest at the White House in those days.
Barrack was charged with conspiracy, obstruction of justice and making false statements under questioning by the FBI in 2019.
Matthew Grimes, 27, of Aspen, Colorado, a former executive at Barrack’s Colony Capital, since rebranded in June as DigitalBridge Group Inc., and Emirati businessman Rashid al Malik, 43, are his alleged co-conspirators.
He will be arraigned alongside Grimes Monday in Brooklyn federal court.
Prosecutors charge Malik acted as a go-between between Barack and UAE leaders. Grimes posted $5 million (€4.25 million) in bail and was released.
Barrack is latest Trump confidant to face federal charges
Before Barrack, Trump’s former campaign chair, former deputy campaign chair, former chief strategist, former national security adviser, former personal lawyer and his company’s longtime chief financial officer have all faced federal charges.
ar/sri (AP, Reuters)
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