GOP fundraiser Elliott Broidy’s office in Los Angeles was raided last July by federal investigators looking for records detailing his dealings with “Trump administration associates” and and foreign officials, according to a new report Monday.
ProPublica, in its article about the raid, said that the sealed search warrant for Broidy’s office listed three potential crimes that authorities are investigating: conspiracy, money laundering, and covert lobbying on behalf of foreign officials.
The report said that federal agents were authorized in that warrant to use Broidy’s face and hands if needed to unlock phones that require either fingerprint or facial scans.
The California businessman until last year was deputy finance chair of the Republican National Committee, and had served as finance vice chairman of Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and inaugural committee.
ProPublica reported that the search warrant indicates that investigators are eyeing Broidy’s alleged work on behalf of Jho Low, a fugitive Malaysian financier who is believed to have masterminded the looting of billions of dollars from the Malaysian sovereign wealth fund 1MDB.
And the article said investigators also intended to seize records from Broidy related to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar, as well as documents related to Chinese dissident businessman Guo Wengui.
The New York Times reported in November, along with the Washington Post, that Broidy matches the description of a person identified as Individual No. 1 in court filings by federal prosecutors as someone who took part in a lobbying effort to have the Trump administration terminate a probe into the alleged theft from 1MDB.
Lawyers for Broidy had no immediate comment when contacted by CNBC.
One of those lawyers, Chris Clark, last year told The Washington Post that, “Elliott Broidy has never agreed to work for, been retained by nor been compensated by any foreign government for any interaction with the United States Government, ever. Any implication to the contrary is a lie.”
Broidy pleaded guilty in 2009 to a felony, rewarding official misconduct, for having given almost $1 million in gifts to state officials as part of an effort to win $250 million in pension fund investments by New York State in his firm. That charge was later reduced to a misdemeanor Broidy cooperated with investigators.
He resigned as a top fundraiser at the RNC in April 2018 after revelations that he had, through a deal worked out by Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen, agreed to pay a Playboy model to keep quiet about his extramarital affair with her.