The eighth and last person in the meeting between a Russian lawyer and Donald Trump Jr. last June has been identified as a U.S. citizen and employee of a Russian real-estate company, according to a report.
The man was identified as Ike Kaveladze, an employee of the Russian businessman who knew President Trump from the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow and set the meeting up, the Washington Post reported.
The Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, has said she asked the businessman, who she had previously done work for, Aras Agalarov, to set up a meeting between her and the Trump campaign, to discuss matters relating to the repeal of the Magnitsky Act. At the time, she was representing a company accused of violating it.
Agalarov had his son set up the meeting through his publicist Rob Goldstone, and asked Kaveladze, a vice president for Agalarov’s company, to be there as his representative.
Agalarov’s lawyer, Scott Balber, told the Post that Kaveladze believed he would act as a translator, but arrived to discover that the lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya had brought her own translator — a former State Department employee named Anatoli Samochornov.
Balber said Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating Russian interference in the presidential election and whether there was collusion with the Trump campaign, requested information about Kaveladze.
Balber told CNN that Kaveladze is a long-time US citizen who speaks fluent Russian and has “never had any engagement with the Russian government in any capacity.”
The meeting has become the latest controversy in the media’s coverage of the investigation, with Trump critics saying the meeting was an effort by the Russian government to “dangle” the prospect of collusion with the campaign.
Goldstone had told Trump Jr. that Agalarov had incriminating information about Hillary Clinton that he wanted to pass on. Veselnitskaya has said she believed she was there to talk about her efforts to undermine the Magnitsky Act and its champion, U.S.-born hedge fund manager William Browder.
Trump Jr. said the meeting lasted for about 20 minutes and was not useful. Then-campaign chair Paul Manfort and the president’s son-in-law and then-campaign adviser Jared Kushner also attended, but left before the meeting was over.
As for the “Russian” side — two were U.S. citizens: Kaveladze, and Russian American lobbyist Rinat Akhmetshin, who Veselnitskaya knew from her anti-Magnitsky Act efforts.
One was a State Department employee, Anatoli Samochornov, Veselnitskaya’s translator.
One was a British publicist Rob Goldstone, who worked to set up the meeting for Agalarov.
The last was the Russia lawyer, Veselnitskaya.