Russian oligarch met with Michael Cohen at Trump Tower during transition

Cohen, now most famous for being Trump's "fixer" was caught meeting with the Russian businessman on video, according to the New York Times.

Intrater told the Times that he and Vekselberg spent about 15 minutes in Cohen's office on January 9, 2017, talking "about how much we hoped U.S".

When it was revealed that a US firm with ties to Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg had paid Michael Cohen half a million dollars, the firm, Columbus Nova, assured the oligarch had nothing to do with it. "Columbus Nova is an investment management company exclusively owned and controlled by Americans", the company assured.

As CNN reports, "a person familiar with the meeting" says it was brief and claims "Vekselberg was not originally expected to attend".

Robert Mueller, the special counsel leading the Russia investigation, is also said to be interested in whether Cohen and other Trump associates facilitated Russian influence over the 2016 USA election and USA policy after Trump won.

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The questions asked of Vekselberg suggest that Mueller's team has been examining some of Cohen's business relationships as part of the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

Federal investigators have shown interest in the Cohen contract, the New York Times reported. The second time was during Trump's inauguration, which was attended by at least six Putin-allied Russians, including Vekselberg. He noted they did not see Trump, who was in the building that day, and it's unknown of the then-president-elect was aware it was happening.

Early this year, Mr. Mueller's investigators stopped Mr. Vekselberg at a New York-area airport after he arrived on a private plane, The New York Times reported in early May.

"Obviously, if I'd known in January 2017 that I was about to hire this high-profile guy who'd wind up in this big mess, I wouldn't have introduced him to my biggest client, and wouldn't have hired him at all", Intrater said, stressing that he has done nothing wrong. He did not get an administration job, which he was reportedly expecting, and instead set up his own consulting firm for clients who wanted advice on working with the new administration.

Cohen's deal with Columbus Nova did not work out well for him. Mr. Mueller's office has since referred the investigation of Mr. Cohen to the prosecutors in Manhattan.

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