FBI Raids Today Have the Left All Excited but It May Offer More for Those on Right

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

There was an FBI raid in Washington, D.C and another in NYC that had everyone talking today — on the homes related to Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska, often termed a close associate of Vladimir Putin.

The FBI didn’t explain what the raids were in relation to beyond a spokesperson saying that they were conducting “law enforcement activity at the home” on the “basis of two court orders, connected to U.S. sanctions.” She also noted that the houses do not belong to Mr. Deripaska but to relatives of Mr. Deripaska.

So it’s possible that the raids didn’t have anything to do with Deripaska at all and/or they’re about whether he’s trying to evade sanctions.

Deripaska was sanctioned by the Treasury Department in 2018, which at the same said he had been investigated for a variety of different alleged crimes. The sanctions prevent him from owning property in the United States.

From Tri-City Herald:

He sued, unsuccessfully, to try to force the government to overturn those sanctions and his lawyers argued that the penalties cost him billions of dollars. In the lawsuit, Deripaska’s lawyers said that while the Washington home was owned by a limited liability company, which in turn was owned by a British Virgin Island trust established by Deripaska in 2006, he had never lived there.

But the raids immediately had the folks on the left all excited because they only know of Deripaska as having a connection to Paul Manafort. They were speculating that this is somehow related to Manafort. So it’s kicking off their Russia collusion fury again, which is kind of funny. They still are easily led down this path even after tripping all over it and having it fall flat in their efforts against President Donald Trump again and again.

Of course, the reason it kept falling flat for those on the left is that Russia collusion with Trump was never real, it was weaponized and promoted by Democrats/Hillary Clinton to hurt Trump. So the left is just spinning their wheels again.

But what’s interesting in the Deripaska raids is that Deripaska didn’t just have a connection to Manafort. He had a lot of other interesting connections — like the fact that Christopher Steele worked for him for years.

Steele and his company, Orbis Business Intelligence, worked for Deripaska in early 2016, helping recover millions of dollars the Russian oligarch claimed Manafort had stolen from him.

The Senate report revealed Steele started working on behalf of Deripaska through the Russian oligarch’s lawyers beginning as early as 2012 through part of 2017. The investigation found “multiple links between Steele and Deripaska” and “indications that Deripaska had early knowledge of Steele’s work” just a few months before he began compiling his now-discredited dossier. Steele’s continued relationship with Deripaska “provid[ed] a potential direct channel for Russian influence on the dossier,” the report read.

Steele worked for a “close associate of Putin” for years. So the man who came out with the dossier trying to smear Trump had that connection.

Meanwhile, this all comes at a time when the Durham investigation is heating up and the focus is very clearly on the Clinton lawyers who were involved in hiring Fusion who engaged Steele. So the timing is rather intriguing.

It may be unrelated and just sanctions-related, but given the timing, it surely does make one think. One has to think that Deripaska might have a lot to say that could be very intriguing especially if they have things to hold over his head.