Maria Butina

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Re: Maria Butina

Postby JackRiddler » Fri Feb 15, 2019 3:09 am

seemslikeadream » Thu Feb 14, 2019 9:00 pm wrote:
But on the way to securing that guilty plea, the prosecutors targeting Butina have made at least one serious misstep: They had to retract an ugly accusation that she traded sex for access.


This was not a misstep. This is what we do with witches.

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Re: Maria Butina

Postby seemslikeadream » Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:13 am

Maria Butina is just the tip of the Russia iceberg

The "Butina did nothing wrong" category is mostly right wing but also contains left-wing accounts such as journalists @arronjmate.

DD710717-BD39-4FFD-9675-358DA7C9A60B.jpeg
DD710717-BD39-4FFD-9675-358DA7C9A60B.jpeg (182.26 KiB) Viewed 498 times


NRA Chief Wayne LaPierre Targeted in Congressional Inquiry

The NRA The Russia Connection
viewtopic.php?f=33&t=40968


Ron Wyden

Verified account

Maria Butina has pleaded guilty to being part of a conspiracy to infiltrate and manipulate American democracy. Butina admitted today she was a Russian agent who used the NRA. Americans need to know: Who at the NRA knew Butina’s agenda, and what did they get in return?
https://twitter.com/RonWyden/status/107 ... gr%5Etweet



Butina is pleading to have spied *with an American,* Paul Erickson, a connected GOPer.

Image


Konstantin Nikolaev a Russian billionaire with US investments backed Maria Butina, according to a person familiar with her Senate testimony - a spokesman said Nikolaev was in contact with Butina as she launched a pro-gun rights group in Russia 2012-2014


The Butina 11: Meet the Russians ‘Handpicked’ for Trump Event

We now know “U.S. Person 2” is George O’Neill Jr., an heir to the Rockefeller fortune and a conservative opinion writer, from a report today in the WSJ. O'Neill is believed to have helped build a secret line of communication between the U.S. right wing behind Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, and the Russian government under President Vladimir Putin.


Maria Butina’s strange route from Russia to US jail
Image

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The Kremlin and GOP Have a New Friend—and Boy, Does She Love Guns

Russian "Agent" And A GOP Operator Left A Trail Of Cash, Documents Reveal

Accused Russian Spy Maria Butina Told American CEO: Send Cash to Moscow

Image

Did Alleged Russian Spy Maria Butina Cause a Leadership Shake-up at the NRA?

Weeks after the feds raided Butina’s apartment, the gun group’s president made a hasty exit.


‘US Person 2’ in the case of alleged Russian agent Maria Butina is George O’Neill — his daughter interned for Dana Rohrabacher and helped with an anti-Magnitsky event


Image

A Time Magazine report on the February 2017 dinner hosted by O’Neill and attended by Maria Butina, Alexander Torshin, Paul Erickson, Dana Rohrabacher and others, described it as an example of how Moscow was cozying up to the Republican right.

Accused Russian Agent's Journey To Washington Began In South Dakota


Image

All the times alleged Russian spy’s lawyer went on Fox News and didn’t say who he was
Robert Driscoll loved appearing on Fox News to talk about Russia, but not about who he was working for.


Wife of Former N.R.A. President Tapped Accused Russian Agent in Pursuit of Jet Fuel Payday

MARIA BUTINA’S LEGAL TEAM EMBRACES DISINFORMATION (WITH HELP FROM RUSSIA)


Read: accused Russian spy Maria Butina’s plea agreement

Image

The Spanish connection with Trump’s Russia scandal

Alexander Torshin, deputy governor of the Central Bank of Russia and investigated in Spain for money laundering, has infiltrated the US president’s circle


When accused Russian spy Maria Butina needed money from oligarch Konstantin Nikolaev, she went to Igor Pisarsky, whose clients include Alfa Bank, Vekselberg's Skolkovo, & Rostec – AND whose charity gave an award to Trump associate, SERGEI MILLIAN.


Butina’s Boyfriend Admits to Setting up Trump-Russia Backchannel via the NRA

download/file.php?id=1827
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Re: Maria Butina

Postby JackRiddler » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:22 am

.

I'm not at all a fan of the NRA or the "Girls With Guns" genre, but it's not illegal that I know of, is it?

Make sure to keep posting the 9000-pixel-sized mugshot of the evil Rus witch. Just to reinforce your fervor and bonafides.

Now. Who's this asshole, the Conspirador?

seemslikeadream wrote:
The "Butina did nothing wrong" category is mostly right wing but also contains left-wing accounts such as journalists @arronjmate.

Image


Is he already gainfully employed at New Knowledge, NSA, GMF, H68, Integrity Initiative, WaPo or the like? Or is he auditioning for a job, by showing his skills at gathering megabytes of data that tells us nothing we did not already know? (Except, I doubt anyone wrote, "Butina did nothing wrong" in so many words, at least not all that often, so he's also a genius of interpretative word crunching.) He is okay at putting a quantitative drag outfit on simpleminded McCarthyite shite, but a lot of people can do that. The competition is stiff. The ominous image makes the stock choice of displaying the Baddies as Reds and the Goodies as Greens. Traffic light colors, I guess. Stop, Reds! The Reds are bad people. We are keeping a list! And it's not just a list. We're weaponizing our skills at graphics presentation for the devout. Hang this icon on your screen today.

Okay, so it's open season for defaming Maté now, we get it. Aaron very bad! Devilish. Redskie.

Is Bamford now also one of THEM? Just curious.

I know this stops nowhere and must consume all heretics. At least it does not yet involve actual stakes and fires. (I mean, unless you're in a drone free-fire zone.)

If your response is several feet longer than my post, and if of this length at least 20 inches are copy-paste of graphics and items you've already posted for every inch of your own words, then that is also a quantitative indicator of something.

Sad. ( <--- that's probably a data point for a graphic exposing miscreants who use English idioms sometimes also employed by Trump.)

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Re: Maria Butina

Postby seemslikeadream » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:51 am

employed by Trump
:jumping: :jumping: :jumping:

The NRA Welcomed Maria Butina—Even As She Worked to Arm Anti-American Thugs Abroad
https://www.motherjones.com/politics/20 ... in-crimea/


do you think I care about your massive word assemblage? :)


a quantitative indicator of something

off topic but oh so relevant to all things Jack....same old song with a different......

Trump Associate Paul Manafort ‘Changed His Story Completely’ to Protect Suspected Member of Russian Intelligence, Prosecutors Say

why would Manafort lie? A lie that will keep him in jail for the rest of his life ....why would he do that Jack?

Mark Warner on federal judge saying that Manafort lied about his contacts with a man tied to Russian intel: "This is one of the reasons why the president is terrified about the results of the Mueller investigation and the Senate Intelligence investigation."

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A week after Manafort passed Trump's internal poll data to a Russian military intelligence trained guy who'd been passing messages from Manafort to another GRU guy who worked for Deripaska, Deripaska met with the indicted head of the troll farm and Putin.

WE’RE ONLY SEEING HALF OF MANAFORT’S COOPERATION

That Manafort shared Trump campaign polling data with Konstantin Kilimnik, a longtime associate of his who the FBI thinks has “ties to Russian intelligence” (a Mueller prosecutor said this topic goes “very much to the heart of” their larger investigation)
That in 2017 and 2018, Manafort worked with Kilimnik to advance to promote a “Ukraine peace plan” (aimed, it seems, at settling the Russia-Ukraine conflict on terms favorable to Russia)
That $125,000 paid out from a pro-Trump Super PAC to a political media firm during the campaign was later used to help pay Manafort’s legal fees
That Manafort changed his story about a matter another Justice Department office is investigating — one that seems to involve the Trump campaign or administration


Maria Butina pleads guilty to conspiring to act as a Russian agent
https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/maria-b ... d=59797391


Erickson began the email, sent to then-incoming NRA President Pete Brownell, with florid language.

“Dear International Man of Mystery or should we just start calling you “Austin Powers” to your face??” he wrote, with a smiley face.

“Miss Butina has (apparently) moved heaven and earth and manipulated the Russian FSB (the current incarnation of the old KGB) and gotten you cleared for a tour of one (1) Russian arms factory the day before the NRA delegation arrives in Moscow,” he continued. “She found a way to shrink a normally 3-week process into about 3-days (probably because most of the FSB agents ‘assigned’ to her want to marry her).”
https://www.thedailybeast.com/boyfriend ... r-nra-trip


Alexander Ionov

Vice chairman, Security Committee, State Duma
“Maria Butina is a human rights activist, for me Maria Butina is a public figure, a student of the American University, and the most relevant is that she is a person who did not work (collaborate) with the Russian state bodies.”
Source: Voice of America, January 29, 2019



Is that Butina in this photo with Rogozin, Torshin, and NRA officials?
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:partydance:
Image

Image
Last edited by seemslikeadream on Fri Feb 15, 2019 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Maria Butina

Postby JackRiddler » Fri Feb 15, 2019 11:34 am

.

Your tabloid-style assemblage hardly amounts to evidence of Butina's espionage conspiracy. As for this:

seemslikeadream » Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:51 am wrote:do you think I care about your massive word assemblage? :)


Thanks! It was pretty short, actually, took me about five minutes. But it's very kind of you to acknowledge my effort at writing thoughts in words, using a language.

Is Bamford one of THEM, by the way?
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Re: Maria Butina

Postby seemslikeadream » Fri Feb 15, 2019 11:36 am

oh I was thinking more of your massive words in RI total

this is a fact

Russian spy Maria Butina pleads guilty to conspiracy against US

Manafort is going to jail for the rest of his life ...why does he keep lying?



Erickson’s email, which included logistics for Brownell’s Russia travels, maintained a cheerful tone throughout. It differs sharply from how Erickson and Butina—who started a Russian gun rights group and courted American conservatives—described her interactions with the FSB to journalist James Bamford for the New Republic piece. Those interviews are their only extensive on-record comments about the case since last summer, when Butina was arrested and charged with acting as a covert agent for the Russian government. In December, she pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges stemming from what federal prosecutors described as an effort to “establish unofficial lines of communication with Americans having power and influence over U.S. politics.” Butina is currently in jail awaiting sentencing.

But on the way to securing that guilty plea, the prosecutors targeting Butina have made at least one serious misstep: They had to retract an ugly accusation that she traded sex for access.

Erickson and Butina say the Russian authorities also scrutinized her.

“She was under constant FSB surveillance in Russia,” Erickson told Bamford. “They would go to all the public meetings of her group, and they would go to all the rallies. Sometimes just show up in her offices once a week.”

Butina also described a fraught relationship with the FSB.

“We were watched,” she said, “but unless you crossed the line, no one’s going to go to prison. The question becomes: Do you cross this line? Do you become dangerous to the regime at a certain point? I had a bag packed in my hallway at home in case I’m imprisoned, somebody can bring it to me. That’s my reality.”

It would not be unusual for the FSB to scrutinize Butina’s gun rights group. Putin’s government generally opposes efforts to expand gun rights in Russia, in part due to fear of armed resistance. And it has long telegraphed hostility to civil society organizations. Despite that, the Kremlin green-lit outreach efforts by Butina’s group to the NRA, according to a report by a U.S. intelligence agency which The Daily Beast reviewed.

A source close to Erickson said his email and his statements to Bamford are consistent.
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Re: Maria Butina

Postby JackRiddler » Fri Feb 15, 2019 11:43 am

.

Do you think Bamford is one of THEM, SLAD? Is he serving the Putin agenda for some reason? Do you think they've got kompromat on him, perhaps?

.

"97 percent of federal cases and 94 percent of state cases end in plea bargains." According to the National Registry of Exonerations, "15 percent of all exonerees — people convicted of crimes later proved to be innocent — originally pleaded guilty." That is the reality of a criminal justice system known around the world as harsh, unjust, racist, and industrial. I guess you're a fan?

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We meet at the borders of our being, we dream something of each others reality. - Harvey of R.I.

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Re: Maria Butina

Postby seemslikeadream » Fri Feb 15, 2019 11:47 am

the Traitor in Chief just declared a National Emergency ...Putin would be so proud


WHATEVER IT TAKES TO GET TO THE NRA AND THEIR RUSSIAN MONEY

The NRA The Russia Connection
viewtopic.php?f=33&t=40968



According to her boyfriend, Butina had major sway with FSB officers "assigned" to her.



I have addressed Bamford four times


Erickson’s email, which included logistics for Brownell’s Russia travels, maintained a cheerful tone throughout. It differs sharply from how Erickson and Butina—who started a Russian gun rights group and courted American conservatives—described her interactions with the FSB to journalist James Bamford for the New Republic piece. Those interviews are their only extensive on-record comments about the case since last summer, when Butina was arrested and charged with acting as a covert agent for the Russian government. In December, she pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges stemming from what federal prosecutors described as an effort to “establish unofficial lines of communication with Americans having power and influence over U.S. politics.” Butina is currently in jail awaiting sentencing.

But on the way to securing that guilty plea, the prosecutors targeting Butina have made at least one serious misstep: They had to retract an ugly accusation that she traded sex for access.

Erickson and Butina say the Russian authorities also scrutinized her.

“She was under constant FSB surveillance in Russia,” Erickson told Bamford. “They would go to all the public meetings of her group, and they would go to all the rallies. Sometimes just show up in her offices once a week.”

Butina also described a fraught relationship with the FSB.

“We were watched,” she said, “but unless you crossed the line, no one’s going to go to prison. The question becomes: Do you cross this line? Do you become dangerous to the regime at a certain point? I had a bag packed in my hallway at home in case I’m imprisoned, somebody can bring it to me. That’s my reality.”

It would not be unusual for the FSB to scrutinize Butina’s gun rights group. Putin’s government generally opposes efforts to expand gun rights in Russia, in part due to fear of armed resistance. And it has long telegraphed hostility to civil society organizations. Despite that, the Kremlin green-lit outreach efforts by Butina’s group to the NRA, according to a report by a U.S. intelligence agency which The Daily Beast reviewed.

A source close to Erickson said his email and his statements to Bamford are consistent.


Erickson began the email, sent to then-incoming NRA President Pete Brownell, with florid language.

“Dear International Man of Mystery or should we just start calling you “Austin Powers” to your face??” he wrote, with a smiley face.

“Miss Butina has (apparently) moved heaven and earth and manipulated the Russian FSB (the current incarnation of the old KGB) and gotten you cleared for a tour of one (1) Russian arms factory the day before the NRA delegation arrives in Moscow,” he continued. “She found a way to shrink a normally 3-week process into about 3-days (probably because most of the FSB agents ‘assigned’ to her want to marry her).”
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Re: Maria Butina

Postby seemslikeadream » Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:04 pm

here...you are not going to like it ...you've got your AM ...I have my MW and never the twain shall meet :P


And that’s important because of a detail that Bamford remains utterly silent about.

.....

Bamford’s own description of “a number of long lunches starting last March at a private club in downtown Washington, D.C.” make it clear he is the journalist in question.

.......

Now, to be clear: Bamford never did publish anything on Butina during the period when the gag was in place (Chutkan lifted the gag on December 21). Even if Bamford had published something during that period, so long as Bamford did respect Driscoll’s advice that their ongoing conversations should be off the record, there was nothing Bamford could publish that would directly reflect her own statements.

......

That’s true not just for the way Bamford obscures the timeline here — suggesting she was always in solitary — but because by obscuring that timeline, Bamford serves to hide that it was Bamford’s own communications with and about Butina that got her thrown back into solitary.

.........

Bamford’s own description of “a number of long lunches starting last March at a private club in downtown Washington, D.C.” make it clear he is the journalist in question.




BAMFORD’S SILENCE ABOUT HOW MARIA BUTINA GOT THROWN BACK INTO SOLITARY

February 13, 2019/59 Comments/in Intelligence, Russian hacks /by emptywheel
A number of people have asked me what I make of this piece from James Bamford, pitching the case against Maria Butina as a grave injustice, just after Paul Erickson (who may be the real intended beneficiary of this piece) was charged in the first of what is likely to be two indictments, and as the government extends her cooperation by two weeks.

There are parts that are worthwhile — such as his argument that because Butina didn’t return a bragging email from JD Gordon, it suggests she wasn’t trying to recruit him.

There are other parts I find weak.

Bamford oversells the degree to which the press sustained the serial honeypot angle — after all, some of us were debunking that claim back in September, when he appears to have been silent — without mentioning the fact that Butina first started proffering cooperation with prosecutors, presumably against Paul Erickson and George O’Neill, on September 26. The word “visa” doesn’t appear in the article’s discussion of Butina’s status as a grad student, leaving unrebutted the government’s claim that Butina chose to come to the US as a student because it provided travel privileges that served her influence operation. Bamford (who hasn’t covered the Mueller investigation) grossly overstates the significance of Mueller’s choice not to integrate Butina’s case into his own investigation. He also falsely treats all counterintelligence investigations into Russia as one ongoing investigation (see this post for my ongoing complaints about virtually everyone doing the same). He suggests that Butina will need to be traded for Paul Nicholas Whelan, when the government has already said she’ll be deported once she serves her sentence (which will likely be time served). He quotes Putin’s interest in Butina’s case, without noting that Russia has only shown the interest they showed in her in one other defendant, Yevgeniy Nikulin. And those are just a few of the details with which I take issue.

But these passages, in particular, strike me as problematic.

Since August 17, Butina has been housed at the Alexandria Detention Center, the same fortresslike building that holds Donald Trump’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort. On November 10, she spent her 30th birthday in solitary confinement, in cell 2F02, a seven-by-ten-foot room with a steel door, cement bed, and two narrow windows, each three inches wide. She has been allowed outside for a total of 45 minutes. On December 13, Butina pleaded guilty to conspiracy to act as an unregistered agent of the Russian Federation. She faces a possible five-year sentence in federal prison.

[snip]

On November 23, 2018, Butina went to sleep on a blue mat atop the gray cement bed in her cell, her 81st day in solitary confinement. Hours later, in the middle of the night, she was awakened and marched to a new cell, 2E05, this one with a solid steel door and no food slot, preventing even the slightest communication. No reason was given, but her case had reached a critical point.


That’s true not just for the way Bamford obscures the timeline here — suggesting she was always in solitary — but because by obscuring that timeline, Bamford serves to hide that it was Bamford’s own communications with and about Butina that got her thrown back into solitary.

Butina’s lawyers laid out her protective custody status in a filing on November 27.

In addition to general population prisoners, the Alexandria detention center houses federal detainees awaiting trial before this court in “administrative segregation,” more commonly known as solitary confinement. This form of restrictive housing is not a disciplinary measure, but is purportedly used by corrections personnel to isolate inmates for their own protection or the safe operation of the facility.

[snip]

Between her commitment at the Correctional Treatment Facility in Washington, DC and then Alexandria detention center, Ms. Butina has been isolated in solitary confinement for approximately 67 days straight. Despite a subsequent release into general population that came at the undersigned’s repeated requests, correctional staff reinstated her total isolation on November 21, 2018 although no infraction nor occurrence justified the same.


The timeline they lay out makes it clear Butina was in protective custody from July 15 to around September 21, but then placed in the general population. The timeline is absolutely consistent with Butina agreeing to cooperate in order to get placed in general population (the motion to transport her was submitted September 21, so at the same time she was placed in the general population). The fact that the government uses solitary to coerce cooperation from prisoners deserves condemnation, and that definitely seems to have been at play here.

But even at a time she had active orders to be transported for cooperation (the court authorized a second request for transfer from late October through the time she pled guilty), Butina was placed back in solitary. The timeline her defense attorneys lay out, however, suggests that Bamford was incorrect in stating she was in solitary on her birthday on November 10. She wasn’t moved back to solitary until November 21.

On the afternoon of November 21, 2018, counsel received a never-before urgent phone call from a jailhouse counselor regarding Ms. Butina. The basis for that call was her return to solitary confinement. The undersigned called Chief Joseph Pankey and Captain Craig Davie in Alexandria in response. After conferring with them, however, it has become clear that the facility’s use of administrative segregation is a false pretext to mask an indefinite solitary confinement that is unjust and without cause.

Staff purported to base their decision to segregate on Ms. Butina referring a fellow inmate to her lawyers (that is, she gave her lawyers’ phone number to a fellow inmate), but staff did not find a disciplinary violation—major or minor. Chief Pankey and Captain Davie then resorted to the decision being “for her safety,” knowing that administrative segregation disallows an appeal internally.

As of the date of this filing, Ms. Butina has now been in solitary confinement for 22 hours a day for 6 consecutive days with no prospective release date. According to at least one deputy, the move to solitary confinement has also not been entered into the Alexandria detention center computer system, and Ms. Butina’s status is disclosed only by a piece of tape with handwriting attached to the guard stand.


And that’s important because of a detail that Bamford remains utterly silent about.

As laid out in a hearing transcript, around that time, the government recorded calls from Butina to “certain journalists” suggesting the journalist consult someone who had her lawyers’ first name.

DRISCOLL: The conflict raised by the government, I think the government does not think there’s been any violation of order by defense counsel, but due to circumstances regarding recorded calls that the government had of Ms. Butina and to certain journalists, the government raised the concern to us; and we wanted to raise it with the Court so that there would be no question when the plea is entered that the plea is knowing and voluntary, and we wanted to kind of preemptively, if necessary, get Ms. Butina separate counsel briefly to advise her on her rights, to make sure that she got her constitutional right to conflict-free advice.

[snip]

MR. KENERSON: The basic nature of the potential conflict is that this Court, I think, issued in an order back in September regarding Local Rule 57.7. The government has some jail calls from Ms. Butina in which she is talking to a reporter numerous times on those calls. She makes some references on those calls to individuals who could be — we don’t know that they’re defense counsel, but shares first name with defense counsel potentially acting as go-between at a certain point. That’s part one of the potential conflict. Part two is —

THE COURT: Wait. So, wait. Stop. Part one is a potential conflict. Do you see a conflict because you believe she’s acting at the behest of her attorneys or as a conduit for her attorneys to violate the Court’s order?

MR. KENERSON: It’s — someone viewing that in the light least favorable to defense counsel might be able to argue that this is some quantum of evidence that defense counsel possibly were engaged in assisting Ms. Butina in violating the Court’s order.

THE COURT: All right. But that goes to whether counsel, with the aid of his client, violated my — and I’ll use the colloquial term for it, my “gag order.” How does that go to — and maybe you’ll tell me; I cut you off. But how does that go to the voluntariness of her plea?

MR. KENERSON: So if there is an allegation that defense counsel assisting her somehow in violating the, again, to use the colloquial term the “gag order,” that would give defense counsel a reason to want to basically plead the case to avoid that potential violation from becoming public. And curry favor with the government.


Driscoll went on to explain why his client was talking to a journalist with whom she had a friendship that “predates all of this” in spite of her being subject to a gag order.

The circumstances, just so the Court’s aware, Ms. Butina has a friendship with a particular journalist that predates all of this. The journalist was working on a story about Ms. Butina prior to any of this coming up, prior to her Senate testimony, prior to her arrest, and had numerous on-the-record conversations with her prior to any of this happening. At the time the gag order was entered, I took the step of informing the journalist that, although he could continue to talk to Ms. Butina, he could not use any of their post gag-order conversations as the basis for any reporting, and the journalist has not, in any event, made any public statement or done any public reporting on the case to date.


Bamford’s own description of “a number of long lunches starting last March at a private club in downtown Washington, D.C.” make it clear he is the journalist in question.

Judge Chutkan was none too impressed with Driscoll’s advice.

THE COURT: Well, putting aside the questionable advisability of having your client talk to a reporter while she is pending trial and there’s a gag order present — and I understand you told the reporter that they couldn’t make any public statements, but as a former criminal defense attorney myself, I find that curious strategy.


Now, to be clear: Bamford never did publish anything on Butina during the period when the gag was in place (Chutkan lifted the gag on December 21). Even if Bamford had published something during that period, so long as Bamford did respect Driscoll’s advice that their ongoing conversations should be off the record, there was nothing Bamford could publish that would directly reflect her own statements.

And there’s very good reason to question whether the government threw Butina back into solitary because Bamford was reporting on her treatment. That is, it’s not outside the realm of our criminal justice system that Butina was placed back in solitary because a reporter had been tracking her case since before the investigation became public.

Instead of laying out the case for that, however, Bamford instead hides his own role in the process.

To be honest, I think the story is better understood as one about Paul Erickson and not Maria Butina. This story won’t help her at sentencing — that’s going to be based on her cooperation, not what a journalist who has already antagonized the government says about her. But it may help to spin Erickson and George O’Neill’s interest, as well as that of the NRA.

The public record certainly sustains the case that the government used solitary to induce Butina to cooperate — presumably to cooperate against Erickson and O’Neill. That certainly merits attention.

But then the government also used solitary to cut off Butina’s communications with Bamford himself. If it’s this story the government was retaliating against, Bamford should say that, rather than obscuring it.

This is a story about America’s reprehensible use of solitary confinement. But it doesn’t explain a key part of that process here. Given that the story seems to most benefit Erickson, I find that silence remarkable.

https://www.emptywheel.net/2019/02/13/b ... -solitary/



I’m wondering if she was trying to use Bamford as a conduit for messages that she didn’t want heard by the feds, because I’m sure she knows that her phone calls are monitored if not recorded.

.......


Would that have been taking a page out of Paulie Manafort’s book or vice versa? Enquiring minds want to know. :-)



.........



Bamford’s unfamiliarity with the case seems like it is a result in part of the same thing that makes Haberman and Schmidt’s reporting so weak — there is no authoritative set of facts and analysis available against which reporters can check their work, or validate their theses. Or, if they are determined to parrot sources, against which they can be held accountable.

What the right wing has done in the past is connect an oligarch with a pseudo expert, someone like Corsi, to fund and generate a working theory and set of facts to support their story of a scandal.

The left has really missed an opportunity to create a legitimate, honest Trump-Russia version of the crackpot scandal machine of the right. Back around Inauguration Day, it would have been worth the while of liberal money to launch this effort — if Steyer had a clue about how impeachment works, he would have contributed, insisted that they hire serious reporters and analysts, and then gotten out of the way and let them work.

....

Bamford just ignores what’s in her plea, of course. For example, who is the Russian official she has pled guilty to being in a conspiracy with? It must be Torshin, but Bamford spends the article downplaying their relationship as one like a grandparent and grandchild. Wouldn’t a good journalist want to know why she would enter that plea?
I also find it surprising that Bamford does not address the fact that Butina was able to ask candidate Trump a question in 2015, despite that he talks about her meetings with other people in Las Vegas at that time. Though I find the explanations implausible, he does offer some for things like the note that was discovered “How to respond to FSB offer of employment?” If there was an innocent explanation for the Trump question, you would think he would have offered it
https://www.emptywheel.net/2019/02/13/b ... -solitary/
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Re: Maria Butina

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed Mar 20, 2019 10:57 am

The Enigmatic Russian Paying Maria Butina's Legal Bills

Alexander Ionov, the founder of the NGO, called the Anti-Globalization Movement, began raising money for the suspected Russian agent through a fundraising website in 2018.

Natasha Bertrand
7:00 AM ET

Updated at 10:22 a.m. ET on March 20, 2019.

In the murky world of Russian influence operations, a troll farm based out of St. Petersburg can flood American voters with propaganda and disinformation at a deniable distance from the Kremlin. A Russian gun-rights group can cultivate U.S. conservatives at arm’s length from Vladimir Putin. And an unregistered Russian agent being held in a Northern Virginia detention center can have her legal bills paid by an NGO that is partly funded, but not directly controlled, by the Kremlin.

Maria Butina, the first Russian to plead guilty to seeking to infiltrate and influence American policy makers in the run-up to the 2016 election, remains somewhat of a mystery. But her prosecution in Washington, D.C., last year shed light on yet another avenue through which Russia tried to influence American politics in 2016: namely, via an old-fashioned, on-the-ground operation, conducted not by experienced spies but by disarming political operatives. New revelations about Butina’s legal-defense fund in Russia shows that one of her backers has been trying to promote fringe separatist movements in the U.S. since well before 2016.

In 2018, Alexander Ionov, the founder of the NGO, called the Anti-Globalization Movement, began raising money for Butina through a fundraising website that says all proceeds will be “used to finance legal protection and to improve the conditions of Maria’s detention in prison.” The website was first discovered by freelance journalist Dean Sterling Jones. To date, Ionov has raised about 2 million rubles (approximately $30,000) to help pay her legal fees, he told me in a recent interview. The Russian embassy, which has been advocating for Butina’s release, did not return a request for comment.
https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/ar ... aign=share
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Re: Maria Butina

Postby seemslikeadream » Sat Mar 30, 2019 10:40 am

Justice Dept. asks judge to send Butina back to Russia after sentencing

Washington (CNN) — The Justice Department has formally asked a federal judge to send Maria Butina back to Russia after she is sentenced, which is scheduled for late April.

The court documents filed Friday afternoon in advance of her sentencing acknowledge that she agrees not to return to the US for 10 years.

Butina, a 30-year-old Russian national, was arrested last July for acting as an illegal agent of the Russian government and trying to infiltrate GOP political groups as well as the National Rifle Association. In December, Butina pleaded guilty to one criminal charge of conspiracy and has been cooperating with investigators. She has been incarcerated for the more than eight months since her arrest.

Maria Butina, in jail for over 8 months, will finally be sentenced in late April
The move to send her back to Russia comes as little surprise. Part of Butina's plea agreement stated that Butina was likely to be deported upon the completion of her sentence.

"Her sentence is up to the judge. But we are trying to make sure that everything is in place so that she can return home quickly when she has completed any sentence," said Robert Driscoll, Butina's attorney.

Driscoll said earlier this week that he will ask the judge to sentence Butina to time already served

https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/29/politics ... index.html
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Re: Maria Butina

Postby seemslikeadream » Sat Apr 20, 2019 6:57 am

Zoe Tillman


Maria Butina, who pleaded guilty to conspiring to act as an agent for the Russian government, is asking for a sentence of time-served (aka no additional prison time): "...send her home to her family" https://assets.documentcloud.org/docume ... g-Memo.pdf
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Federal prosecutors are asking a judge to sentence Maria Butina to 18 months in prison — they argue that her failure to notify the US of what she was doing was "an integral part of her and the Russian Official’s success in advancing Russia’s interests" https://assets.documentcloud.org/docume ... Butina.pdf
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https://twitter.com/ZoeTillman/status/1 ... 0328071169
"THIS IS THE END OF MY PRESIDENCY. I'M F***ED"
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