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In SDNY Parnas Has His Bail Money Frozen Based on Florida Garnishment Order

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon Alamy photos

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Nov 13 – Igor Fruman had three requests denied, to loosen bond restrictions and have his brother Steve as a bond co-signer, all denied on November 1 by U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York Judge Paul Oetken. Periscope here.
  Now on November 13 from Judge Oetken, this: "Defendant Lev Parnas was released on bail in this case, after signing a $1 million  appearance bond secured by $200,000 in cash.  (Dkt. No. 22.)  On November 1, 2019, a writ of garnishment was served on the Clerk of Court for the  Southern District of New York by a judgment creditor in a Florida civil case.  The writ of  garnishment was issued by the Clerk of Court for the Southern District of Florida in Pues Family  Trust IRA, Michael Pues, Ex’r, v. Parnas Holdings, Inc. & Lev Parnas (19-MC-80024 S.D. Fla.).   It seeks to attach the $200,000 in funds posted by Defendant Parnas.   It is hereby ORDERED that, in light of the writ of attachment, the Clerk of Court shall  not release the funds posted by or on behalf of Defendant Parnas in this matter absent further  order of this Court.  SO ORDERED. "

  Fruman's lawyer Todd Blanche had written to request that Fruman's home detention and GPS monitoring be removed. Assistant US Attorney Nicolas Roos in reply emphasized Fruman being arrested on the jet-way with a one way ticket to Vienna after saying he would ignore a Congressional subpoena.

  Blanche said Fruman alone takes care of his three children while he is getting divorced. Roos said there is a nanny; Blanche agreed.

 After Judge Oetken denied the first two requests, Blanche complained of an SDNY paralegal specialist demanding information from prospective co-signer Steve Fruman about four companies he had not disclosed.

  Roos said they are trying to determine if Steve Fruman is a part of the charged conduct. Judge Oetken said while discovery as such cannot be a goal of the co-signer inquiry, a participant is not an appropriate co-signer. A week was given, with the request to deem Steve Fruman appropriate being denied. Call it 0-for-3. Watch this site.

Back on October 23 Lev Parnas' lawyer raised the issue of executive privilege and the need for a US Department of Justice taint team when his client, along with Igor Fruman, were arraigned and both pleaded not guilty. Inner City Press thread here.

   Judge Oetken inquired into whether Parnas worked for President Trump - his lawyer said no - then put off the issues, and the setting of a trial date, until December 2 at 2 pm. Parnas will be under home detention with GPS monitoring in the Southern District of Florida, with no contact with co-defendants outside the presence of counsel. That's a condition co-defendent David Correia's lawyer said he intended to revisit, telling Inner City Press it was because of business relationships, see below.

 Here's some of how it went on October 23:

Judge Oetken's deputy tells the lawyers, The room is cavernous, please speak up. Now Judge Oekten says, we're hear for arraignment on a four count indictment. Asks for time of arrest and about presentment

 AUSA: Parnas will be released on a $1 million bond. Pre-trial supervision out of Southern District of Florida. Home detention with GPS monitoring; DC for legal visits. Surrender passport, no contact with co-defendants outside presence of counsel (Correia disputes)

 AUSA: Igor Fruman putting up a condo. Judge Oetken approves the bail conditions; now proceeding to the arraignment, Parnas first. He waives public reading of the indictment. Pleads Not Guilty. 

 Now Fruman pleads not guilt. Judge Oetken asks AUSA to describe the discover in the case.  AUSA: multiple search warrants, 50 bank accounts, "the investigation is ongoing."

AUSA: By the Dec 2, 2 pm  pre-trial conference US will know more. Judge Oetken: Given the volume of discovery, not setting a trial date yet. Might set it on Dec 2. Parnas' lawyer will be out of the country on that day, he says.

 Parnas' lawyer says there should be  DOJ taint team, says that there are excutive privilege issues... "hese are issues we need to be very sensitive" with, he says. 

Judge Oetken: When you say executive privilege, you're not suggesting your client worked for the President, are you? Parnas' lawyer: No, my client worked with Mr. Giuliani.

Parnas' lawyer: If information gets out then we determine it is all privileged, we've got a problem. AUSA: This is the first that we've heard of this... With respect with executive privilege, we're happy to have a conversation.

 Judge Oetken to Parnas' lawyer: if there's a particular application that you want to make, I'm all ears. Are you going to reach a protective order? AUSA: We are working on it. Judge Oetken: Anything else? Only exclusion of time under the Speed Trial Act. To Dec 2

 Judge Oetken: Okay, I'll see you all on December 2 at 2 pm. Inner City Press will be there.

Back on October 17, David Correia, charged in a foreign donor scheme, was presented in and bailed out of SDNY Magistrates Court on October 16. On October 17 he and co-defendant Andrey Kukushkin were arraigned before SDNY Judge J. Paul Oetken and both pled not guilty.

  The government said discovery will be extensive, involving more than 10 e-mail accounts. They will work on a protective order and then begin "rolling production." Judge Oetken set the next court date for them for December 2 at 2 pm, and make the defendants' physical attendance optional. (The prosecutors said it would be helpful to have them present.) The two lead named defendants in the case, Parnas and Fruman, will appear before Judge Oetken on October 23 at 11:30 am.

 Kukushkin was released on $1 million bond secured by $100,000 cash and $93,000 in property. Parnas is still in custody in the Eastern District of Virginia, no able yet to meet the bail conditions offered to him. The prosecutor said he will not be transported north for the October 23 appearance absent a new order and revocation of unyet bail condition. Judge Oetken didn't issue such an order, to not problematize Parnas efforts to meet the conditions.

On October 16 one of the conditions of Correia's release was that he not have contact with his co-defendants without the presence of counsel; his lawyer said in court that he might ask to revisit that.

  Afterward Inner City Press asked this attorney Mr. Marcus of Florida, pro hace vice application pending, when and why he would seek to revist that condition, that was imposed without objections on other processed through and bailed by the SDNY Mag court before and after Correia.

  "There is a business relationship," Marcus replied, before declining to say which Middle East country it was Correia has flown back from to self-surrender. A bit later he, Correia and a New York based lawyer ventured out into Worth Street in the rain and photographers, running ahead of them and into a black car and away.

  Here's from the US Attorney's description of the business relations: "Beginning in or around July 2018, PARNAS, FRUMAN, CORREIA, and KUKUSHKIN made plans to form a recreational marijuana business (the “Business Venture”) that would be funded by Foreign National-1, a Russian national, and required gaining access to retail marijuana licenses in particular states, including Nevada (the “Business Venture”).  To further the Business Venture, PARNAS, FRUMAN, CORREIA, and KUKUSHKIN planned to use Foreign National-1 as a source of funding for donations and contributions to state and federal candidates and politicians in Nevada, New York, and other states to facilitate acquisitions of retail marijuana licenses.      In or about September and October 2018, CORREIA drafted a table of political donations and contributions, which was subsequently circulated to the defendants and Foreign National-1.  The table described a “multi-state license strategy” to make between $1million and $2 million in political contributions to federal and state political committees.  The table also included a “funding” schedule of two $500,000 transfers.  Foreign National-1 then arranged for two $500,000 wires on or about September 18, 2018, and October 16, 2018, to be sent from overseas accounts to a U.S. corporate bank account controlled by FRUMAN and another individual.      PARNAS, FRUMAN, CORREIA, and KUKUSHKIN then used those funds transferred by Foreign National-1, in part, to attempt to gain influence and the appearance of influence with politicians and candidates."

Inner City Press will continue to cover these cases.


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