Ukraine and the FBI: Profiles in Corruption
Two cases of corruption have recently come to the fore, both involving foreign countries. Significantly for U.S. citizens, both of these shed light on questionable activities of Hunter Biden regarding vital United States foreign interests. Whether they also provide inference to be drawn about President Biden’s document retention then becomes question for the jury of public opinion.
One of these cases involves the recent raid by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on the home of Ukraine's most corrupt oligarchic Igor Kolomoisky for allegedly embezzling one billion dollars from Ukraine's two largest oil companies. This follows sanctions on Kolomoisky by the United States in 2021 in a ban on travel into the United States for him and his family. Zelensky knows he must punish corruption to continue to receive foreign aid for his war against Russia.
The second corruption case to come to light is the indictment of former high level FBI counterintelligence agent Charles McGonigal. While the head of the FBI's counterintelligence office in New York from 2016 to 2018 and thereafter, he had undisclosed corrupt relationships featuring large amounts of cash payments with both agents of corrupt Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama, and agents of Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, whom Russiagate special counsel Robert Mueller has stated was closely aligned with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Both cases are quite clearly stomach-turning stories of a high-level FBI agent using his position to advance the adverse interest of foreign rivals. However, at first blush they appear to have little to do with any serious connection with the United States, so why should any of us care?
Let's first pick the low hanging fruit about which we've previously discussed regarding Igor Kolomoisky. Please recall that in April and May of 2014, Hunter Biden and his partner Devon Archer were hired as directors by Ukrainian energy company, Burisma, each for $1 million annually. Hunter Biden also received lucrative assignments for a law firm with which he was associated. The controlling owner of Burisma? Yes, you guessed it: Igor Kolomoisky, the majority silent partner behind the seeming number one official (but really number two), Burisma President Mycola Zlochevsky. The number three official was Vadym Pozharskiy.
After Hunter was hired, good things began to happen for Igor Kolomoisky. For instance, he was finally able to get a visa to travel into the United States for him and his family which required influence with the State Dept.
After our Ukrainian point man, then-Vice President Joe Biden, pushed through $3 billion in foreign aid to Ukraine, much was routed for Ukraine's biggest financial institution, PrivatBank, $1.7 billion of which went to loans of PrivatBank from its branch in Cyprus. The loans were to six companies secured by contracts for delivery of goods from overseas companies. The money flowed out to the vendors, but goods never floated in, and the owners of PrivatBank made $1.7 billion, all through these overseas shell companies. The chief owner of PrivatBank? Igor Kolomoisky, a client of Hunter Biden.
Eventually, PrivatBank went into the hole for $5.6 billion, all seemingly into the pockets of Kolomoisky and associates. Kolomoisky was not arrested or imprisoned and lived with impunity in Ukraine through 2016. However, as Vice President Joe Biden was leaving office, Kolomoisky fled Ukraine. Had he previously been protected, we ask?
When Ukrainian prosecutor Viktor Shokin investigated Burisma for corruption and raided the home of Mykola Zlochevsky, Hunter Biden became extremely active. The upshot was that Hunter’s father famously got Shokin fired by threatening to withhold $1 billion in financial aid unless he was terminated.
Corruption cases filed against Burisma were settled favorably to Burisma, after the cases were switched from Shokin’s prosecutorial office to a nongovernmental National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU) influenced by an FBI agent placed by FBI Director James Comey.
Now to McGonigal. McGonigal took cash from Oleg Deripaska’s agent to help lift U.S. sanctions against him and investigate a rival oligarch, both tasked using American intelligence resources. He also took money from a former Albanian intelligence officer to convince corrupt Prime Minister Rama not to award oil drilling contracts to certain Russian front companies and steer them to companies with whom he was associated. What was one company? It appears to have been CEFC China Energy.
A key link noted in the McGonigal indictment to the Albanian prime minister was an unnamed person who in fact is one Dorian Ducka. Ducka was employed by the Chinese global energy firm CEFC; he was also so close to Prime Minister Rama that he held the title of Albania's “adviser of investments.” It appears that CEFC was corruptly influencing Rama to get drilling contracts.
Hunter Biden was also retained by CEFC, an official of which gave him a 3.16 carat diamond and a $100,000 shopping spree. Hunter and associates made an easy five million dollars arranging the purchase by CEFC of U.S. and Canadian Energy assets which had to be approved by U.S. government agencies.
Recall that Tony Bobulinski claimed, in reference to his and Hunter’s CEFC dealings, that 10% of the venture's ownership was for “the Big Guy,” who he claimed, quite reasonably, was Joe Biden.
In 2017, the United States indicted CEFC official Patrick Ho for trying to bribe officials in Chad and Uganda to obtain oil drilling contracts for CEFC. Ho’s first call after arrest? James Biden, Joe Biden's brother.
Quickly, Hunter represented Ho to hire Ho’s criminal defense lawyer, Ed Kim. Kim quickly asked Hunter for the names of certain FBI officials whom Hunter knew. We do not know their names but it's logical that one might be CEFC-influenced FBI agent, Charles McGonigal.
Recall that McGonigal’s conduit to Rama was the CEFC's Dorian Ducka. On Hunter’s laptop has an e-mail chain with his CEFC group about “taking care of” with “remuneration” Dorian Ducka for his help early on. It seems that a major activity of CEFC was corrupt procurement of energy assets for the energy hungry importer, China. Did the CEFC believe it was buying influence with United States government through Hunter? That certainly is a possible inference. CEFC has now declared itself bankrupt, sanctions that do not happen unless the Chinese government wants it to happen. The public heat on CEFC, especially after Hunter’s laptop was discovered was clearly too much even for China.
Now let’s return to Burisma. While Joe Biden has claimed to have no connection to Hunter’s business dealings, the laptop from hell shows Burisma #3 Pozharsky emailing Hunter for his unspecified help shortly after Hunter was hired. Then a year later, ss Shokin turned up the pressure on Burisma, Pozharsky met with Vice President Biden, as arranged by Hunter Biden for which Pozharsky thanked Hunter by e-mail. Months later, Shokin was fired.
When Hunter was auditioning to be hired by Burisma, he sent a lengthy e-mail about Ukrainian offshore drilling prospects as affected both by Russian actions and U.S. sanctions, sounding suspiciously like it had been lifted from a U.S. high level intelligence briefing. The purpose was not, it seems, to convince Hunter’s prospective client that he himself was a brilliant foreign policy adviser. Rather, it was to convince the recipient that he had access to confidential intelligence resources, as the intelligence jargon of his report proves.
We now know that the Penn-Biden Center for Global Engagement was started by Vice President Biden as he left office. It was financed by a reported $67 million in Chinese money. We know that the most valuable U.S. intelligence tools are presidential briefings. Presidential briefings from 2013 through 2016 were among the documents recently uncovered at the Penn Biden Center. There is a picture on Hunter’s laptop of the bankers box of documents with the word “important” scrawled on top with reference to the documents contained in the box.
A number of classified documents were found at Joe Biden's home purportedly rented by Hunter for $50,000 a month. That seems like a lot of money. In short, it may well be that these classified documents had been curated, selected and used for a specific purpose. Hunter is still receiving profits from his 10% ownership in the multi-billion-dollar Bohai Harvest fund financed by the bank of China.
Is there a connection here to the soft reboot of our China policy by the Biden Administration? That same administration is also going easy on the corrupt Albanian regime heavily connected to the main Mexican drug cartel, Sinaloa, along with Albania laundering cartel money and serving as the main European entry point for cocaine. Rama’s corrupt, drug enabling government has not been sanctioned recently by the Secretary of State Anthony Blinken. However, Roma’s conservative rival and former prime Minister Sali Berisha, out of office for eight years and not the seeming imminent problem that the current prime minister is, was sanctioned for corruption. But the man closest to Rama is also close to Hunter Biden, that is, Dorian Ducka.
A final note: oligarch Oleg Deripaska played a prime role in pushing the Russiagate canard against President Trump. Inspector General Michael Horowitz detailed how the Justice Department’s #4 official, Bruce Ohr, lobbied to help Deripaska, explaining to his associates that Deripaska was helping to get Donald Trump.
And, yes, Christopher Steele of Steele Dossier fame was working for the Clinton campaign, but his main years-long patron was – you guessed it – Oleg Deripaska. One of the first FBI reports on Christopher Steele came to the FBI via its London agent to the New York Field office for handling. The agent in charge: Charles McGonigal.
Do we remember Donald Trump was impeached for his call to new Ukrainian President Zelensky, seeking a corruption investigation of the Bidens. Who was Zelensky’s main supporter recently entering the country from his 2016 exile? Igor Kolomoisky.
Lastly, recall that a main witness in the impeachment proceedings against Trump was former Ukraine Ambassador Maria Yovanovich, who had been installed right before Trump took Office, at the behest of VP Joe Biden.
So, when Trump took office, his enemies were in place and they got him before he could get them. James Comey being one such prominent figure, Yovanonich another, and Putin’s friend Deripaska yet another.
When Biden Administration acolytes dismiss any suggestion of corrupt dealings centered around Hunter Biden, perhaps involving his father, and poo-pooing the seemingly problematic retention by his father of valuable classified documents, perhaps raised eyebrows are in order.
John D. O’Connor is a former federal prosecutor and the San Francisco attorney who represented W. Mark Felt during his revelation as Deep Throat in 2005. O’Connor is the author of the books, Postgate: How the Washington Post Betrayed Deep Throat, Covered Up Watergate and Began Today’s Partisan Advocacy Journalism and The Mysteries of Watergate: What Really Happened.