Last month, the Global Influence Operations Report (GIOR) reported on the imprisonment of Imaad Zuberi, a LA businessman, in connection with a massive political influence scheme. This included unregistered lobbying for governments such as Sri Lanka and Turkey, Qatar, and possible ties to Iran and more. US media has now reported that Zuberi’s defense team has claimed during his sentencing that some of these ties were part of Zuberi’s ongoing cooperation with the CIA. According to the report:
April 9, 2021 After his guilty plea but before his sentencing, Mr. Zuberi’s legal team compiled a history of their client’s cooperation with the government, according to the legal documents and people familiar with the defense, which was sealed under a law called the Classified Information Procedures Act, or CIPA, designed to protect intelligence sources and methods during trials. CIPA can only be invoked when national-security issues are at stake and a judge signs the sealing order. In a memo arguing for leniency at sentencing, Mr. Zuberi’s legal team wrote: “His cooperation and assistance to this country has spanned over a decade, as described in more detail in Mr. Zuberi’s CIPA filing.” They referred to that record as the “most remarkable list of assistance to the country encountered by experienced counsel and the court.” Mr. Zuberi’s history of secret help to the Central Intelligence Agency on and off for more than a decade is detailed in the documents—depicting a relationship that started with debriefings about his interactions with foreign officials but grew to involve more formal tasks and missions. [Paywall]
Read the rest here
The earlier GIOR post details the nature of Zuberi’s influence/lobbying activities.
A well-sourced Wikipedia article provides biographical detail on Zuberi:
Zuberi was born in Pakistan and moved to the United States with his parents at the age of three. He earned a BSc in 1997 from the University of Southern California and an MBA in 2006 from Stanford University. Zuberi is vice president of strategic development for Manhattan Street Capital and runs its FundAthena (2015–present). He also serves as vice president of Avenue Ventures and previously was vice president of strategy and market/corporate development at AEGON Group. He was a top fundraiser for President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign and in 2015 was listed as a “Hillblazer,” as those who raised at least $100,000 for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign were known. In 2017, Zuberi contributed $900,000 to Donald Trump’s presidential inaugural committee. Zuberi has supported the Smithsonian National Museum of American History,the Clinton Foundation and UCLA. He also supported Democrat Terry McAuliffe’s 2013 Virginia gubernatorial campaign and the Organizing for Action advocacy group. He has advised the Chinese government on economic policy and the Sri Lanka government.