Costs of businessman Viktor Vekselberg to lobby for Russia's interests in the US amounted to $ 1.6 million, the Associated Press reports without reference to sources.
The agency said that Vekselberg worked closely with his cousin Andrew Intterer, who heads Columbus Nova. At the same AP did not name the period of time for which these funds were spent.
Viktor Vekselberg fell under US sanctions on April 6, 2018. Sanctions provide for the freezing of all its assets in the United States. On May 4, The New York Times wrote about the conversation with Vekselberg of federal agents from the US Special Prosecutor Robert Müller, who is investigating the "Russian case".
The conversation, according to the publication, was held at the airport in New York, where Vekselberg arrived in a private plane. The newspaper writes that the agents stopped the Russian businessman in order to interview him and check his electronic devices. Previously, CNN reported that the agents of Müller showed interest in the businessman due to the fact that through Columbus Nova he made payments for certain services to the personal lawyer of US President Donald Trump Michael Cohen. The representative of the company rejected these charges, calling them false. "Reports that Viktor Vekselberg used Columbus Nova as a shell company to pay for Michael Cohen's services are false," said Columbus Nova legal adviser Richard Owens.
Owens admitted that Columbus Nova actually hired as a business consultant on potential sources of capital and potential investments in real estate and other businesses after Donald Trump joined the US presidency in January 2017. However, the allegations that Vekselberg "was involved in or provided funds for Columbus Nova's interaction with Michael Cohen, is clearly not true," the company's legal adviser said. "Neither Victor Vekselberg nor anyone else, other than Columbus Nova owners, took part in the decision to hire Cohen or to finance cooperation with him," Owens said at the time.
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