New York – Federal investigators this morning executed a search warrant at the home of former President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani in Manhattan, a law enforcement official told The Associated Press.
The lawyer, who is also a former mayor of New York, has been under investigation for several years for his business in Ukraine. Details of the search of his home were not immediately available, but it comes as the federal Justice Department continues its investigation into Giuliani, a staunch ally of Trump.
The official was unable to discuss the investigation publicly and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity. News of the search was first reported by The New York Times.RELATED
The federal investigation into Giuliani’s businesses stalled last year due to a dispute over investigative tactics as Trump unsuccessfully sought re-election, and amid Giuliani’s prominent role in subsequently contesting the results of the race on behalf of Trump.
Giuliani was central to the then president’s efforts to dig up the dirt against his Democratic rival Joe Biden and pressure Ukraine for an investigation into Biden and his son, Hunter, who now faces a criminal tax investigation by the Justice Department.
Giuliani, too, tried to undermine former US ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, who was ousted on Trump’s orders, and met several times with a Ukrainian lawmaker who released edited recordings of Biden in an effort to smear him before the election.
Furthermore, Giuliani had previously called the investigation “pure political persecution.”
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan had pressed last year for a search warrant for records, including some of Giuliani’s communications, but Trump-era Justice Department officials would not sign the request, according to several people familiar with the investigation. who insisted on anonymity to speak about an ongoing investigation.
Officials from the deputy attorney general’s office expressed concern both about the scope of the request, which they thought would contain communications that could be covered by legal privileges between Giuliani and Trump, and the method of obtaining the records, three of the women said. people.
The issue was widely expected to be reviewed by the Justice Department once Attorney General Merrick Garland took office. Garland was confirmed last month and Assistant Attorney General Lisa Monaco was confirmed in charge and sworn in last week. The Department of Justice requires that requests for search warrants served to attorneys be approved by senior department officials.