US Firm that Paid Indicted FBI Informant Alexander Smirnov is Tied to Trump

Alexander Smirnov was paid $600,000 in 2020 – the same year he allegedly began lying to FBI about Bidens’ role in Ukraine business

Court documents and business filings show that an American company that paid indicted FBI informant Alexander Smirnov $600,000 in 2020 has ties to Trump business associates in Dubai.

Smirnov was indicted for lying to the FBI about Joe and Hunter Biden, alleging the father and son engaged in a bribery scheme that would pay each $5 million. The allegations were a key component of an impeachment inquiry led by James Comer.

Back in 2020, Smirnov was paid $600,000 by a company called Economic Transformation Technologies (ETT), prosecutors said. That same year, Smirnov began lying to the FBI about the Bidens, according to the indictment.

The business model of ETT, a Texas-based company, is sketchy. Its CEO is Christopher Condon, a California man whose official biography says he is a former professional tennis player, financial advisor, and currently an entrepreneur.

Condon is also one of three shareholders of ETT Investment Holding Limited in London, along with Pakistani American investor Shahal Khan and Farooq Arjomand, a former chairman and current board member of Damac Properties in Dubai.

The three (Condon, Khan, and Arjoman) have ties to Trump and  a major Middle East developer, Damac.

Former Damac chairman Hussain Sajwani has been described as a close friend by Trump himself. Sajwani attended the 2016 inauguration, and a 2017 Mar-a-Lago party. Eric and Don Jr. attended Sajwani’s daughter’s wedding.

The Trump International golf club in Dubai was licensed by Damac in 2014, and it was disclosed that Trump made $5 million from the licensing deal. Trump said he was not doing personal business deals as president but apparently still talked business with Sajwani.

“Hussein, Damac, a friend of mine, a great guy. I was offered $2bn to do a deal in Dubai, a number of deals, and I turned it down,” Trump said in 2017.

Arjomand replaced Sajwani in 2021 at Damac.

Khan, a New York native, was one of a dozen Pakistani American businessmen who met with Trump and Mike Pompeo in 2017 to discuss the expansion of business in Pakistan. He purchased the Plaza Hotel for $600 million, and reportedly reached out to Paul Manafort’s “real estate fixer” to purchase the Roosevelt Hotel in Manhattan, and in 2022 bought the Pakistani embassy in D.C. for $6.8 million.

Khan is also CEO of BurTech Acquisition Group, a “blank check company”, or public shell company.

Patrick Orlando, listed as a “special adviser” and shareholder of BurTech in 2021, was the CEO and chair of Digital World, another blank check company, from September 2021 to March 2023. When it began a merger with Trump Media & Technology Group in 2021, it was held up by an SEC investigation until given the green light last month.

The finalization of that merger may net Trump more than $4 billion in shares.

The Guardian has more.

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