IranApril 29 2021, 12:19 pm

LA Businessman Imprisoned For Influence Scheme Claims Decades CIA Relationship

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.


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