EXCLUSIVE: Hunter Biden-linked firm allegedly offered Ukraine official ‘access’ to Hillary campaign

4 June, 2021 – By Brooke Singman | Fox News

Blue Star Strategies, the lobbying firm linked to Hunter Biden and Burisma, reportedly under federal investigation for potential illegal lobbying.

EXCLUSIVE: 

Former Ukrainian prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko told former Obama State Department official George Kent he had been “pitched” by a Hunter Biden and Burisma-linked lobbying firm to give him “access” to “high levels” of the Clinton campaign in the weeks leading up to the 2016 presidential election, according to emails between former Obama State Department officials obtained by Fox News. 

The lobbying firm, Blue Star Strategies, is reportedly under federal investigation for potential illegal lobbying. Politico first reported the investigation, which allegedly comes as the Justice Department is ramping up enforcement of foreign governments’ efforts to influence U.S. politics. Those efforts have been linked to work by Republicans, but the probe into Blue Star also puts firms and operatives connected to the Democratic Party under the microscope.

In an email released to Citizens United on Thursday as part of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) filing, and obtained by Fox News, former deputy assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eastern Europe George Kent wrote to a number of Obama administration officials about a meeting he had with Ukrainian prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko in September 2016 about Blue Star Strategies. 

The email, with the subject line “Lutsenko now likely not to go to DC with Blue Star, other Ukr issue comments,” was sent by Kent to the former assistant secretary for fossil energy Christopher Smith, former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and Alan Purcell, the chief political officer at the Kiev embassy from 2014 to 2017.

Prosecutor-general of Ukraine Yuri Lutsenko attends a news conference in Kiev, Ukraine, May 30, 2016.  REUTERS/Gleb Garanich - D1BETHAMTIAA

Prosecutor-general of Ukraine Yuri Lutsenko attends a news conference in Kiev, Ukraine, May 30, 2016.  REUTERS/Gleb Garanich – D1BETHAMTIAA

In the email, dated Sept. 4, 2016, Kent writes that he met with Lutsenko “one on one after I’d SMSed him regarding stories that he was using a third party lobbyist to pull together a planned trip to DC turned into a chat over Thai food at the DCR.” 

Kent, a key witness in the first impeachment proceedings against former President Trump in 2019, said the two discussed options of a trip Lutsenko had been planning to the U.S., and “confirmed he has been pitched by Blue Star, not sought them out.” 

“He said he honestly didn’t know how Blue Star was to get paid — he didn’t have funds — and that some BPP MP that we probably didn’t know ‘and that’s good’ (Truhubenko??) had introduced them to him,” Kent wrote. It is unclear who “Truhubenko” is. 

“Blue Star CEO [Karen] Tramantano’s pitch was that she could gain him access to high levels of the Clinton campaign (GPK note: she was Podesta’s deputy as deputy COS the last year of Bill Clinton’s tenure), and that was appealing—to meet the possible next Presidential Chief of Staff,” Kent wrote. 

“But I pointed out that wasn’t too likely 6 weeks before the election, and that the embassies could arrange meetings at DOJ and State, and the Ukr embassy on the Hill,” he continued. “As for the Hill, not many members would be around 6 weeks before an election when Congress would be in recess, and the attention of the chattering think tank class would be on UNGA. Not the best timing, apart from DOJ and State.” 

Kent went on to write further about Blue Star Strategies which helped to represent Ukrainian natural gas firm Burisma Holdings, where Hunter Biden sat on the board. 

“In connection to Blue Star, I noted their representation of Burisma/Zlochevsky,” Kent wrote. 

Hunter Biden joined Burisma in 2014, and, at the time, reportedly connected Burisma with Blue Star to help the firm fight corruption charges. The founder of Burisma, Mykola Zlochevsky, the former minister of ecologies, had been under investigation in Ukraine. 

The Obama administration pushed for the prosecutor investigating Zlochevsky, Viktor Shokin, to be removed from his post. Shokin was fired in April 2016 and the case was closed by the prosecutor who replaced him, Lutsenko. Joe Biden once boasted on camera that when he was vice president he successfully pressured Ukraine to fire Shokin.

Biden allies, though, maintain that his intervention had nothing to do with his son, but was rather tied to the administration’s concerns of corruption in Ukraine. At the time, as vice president to former President Obama, Biden was running U.S.-Ukraine policy and anti-corruption campaigns. 

Burisma Holdings was at the center of the first impeachment proceedings against former President Trump in 2019, after he pressed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during a phone call to look into the Biden family’s dealings in Ukraine. 

In the email, Kent went on to describe news reports surrounding the 2016 election related to Ukrainian lobbying—including work of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who had a lucrative political consulting business which included Ukraine and later pleaded guilty for financial crimes arising from that work; as well as work of Tony Podesta, the brother of former Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta, who also did lobbying work with Ukraine; money from Ukrainian businessman Victor Pinchuk to the Clinton Foundation; and others. 

Kent said in his conversation with Lutsenko, he “mentioned the various money flows from Ukraine to lobbyists that had been prominently in the news this past month, whether Manafort/Klueyev via Brussels to Podesta Group and Weber/Mercury, Yanu’s Justice Minister Lavrynovych to Skaden/arps-and Greg Caid—and Pinchuk to Clinton Foundation, and the media attention being paid at present to the Kyiv/ Washington lobbyist gravy train… And he got the drift. Not ideal timing, little receptive audience, and wrong facilitator,” Kent wrote. 

Kent added: “He said he’d figure out a better time when there would be more traction/ better audience.” 

Both Kent and Yovanovitch testified as part of the 2019 Trump impeachment. 

Kent, during his testimony, said that he raised concerns with Biden’s office in 2015 that Hunter Biden’s role on the board of Burisma could present “the possibility of the perception of a conflict of interest.”

Kent also testified that he would “love” to see Ukraine look into the circumstances surrounding the closure of the probe tied to Burisma.

Yovanovitch testified that she didn’t have much knowledge about Burisma Holdings, and noted that she only learned of its connection to Biden through “press reports” she read while preparing for her Senate confirmation hearing. 

Fox News, however, first reported last year after obtaining a memo released through a Citizens United FOIA that Yovanovitch met with Blue Star Strategies CEO Karen Tramontano, as a representative of Burisma, inside the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine on Dec. 8, 2016. 

Meanwhile, last year, the Senate Homeland Security Committee, led, at the time by Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., approved subpoenas for Blue Star Strategies as part of its investigation into Hunter Biden’s role on the board of Burisma, and whether individuals at the firm improperly used the relationship with the then-vice president’s son to “influence” U.S. government agencies.

At the time, Tramontano said the firm would cooperate with the committee. 

Meanwhile, the investigation into Blue Star Strategies is reportedly being run out of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Delaware — the same office leading the federal investigation into Hunter Biden’s “tax affairs.” 

The Justice Department declined to comment on the existence of an investigation.

Biden announced he was under federal investigation for his tax affairs in December 2020, after the presidential election. 

At the time, a well-placed government source told Fox News that Hunter Biden is a subject/target of a grand jury investigation. According to the source, a “target” means that there is a “high probability that person committed a crime,” while a “subject” is someone you “don’t know for sure” has committed a crime. 

The source also told Fox News the investigation was predicated, in part, by Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) regarding foreign transactions. Another source familiar with the investigation told Fox News the SARs were regarding funds from “China and other foreign nations.”

The investigation, according to a source familiar with the matter, began in 2018. 

Hunter Biden has maintained he did nothing wrong. In his December statement making the investigation public, Hunter Biden said he took “this matter very seriously” and was “confident that a professional and objective review of these matters will demonstrate that I handled my affairs legally and appropriately, including with the benefit of professional tax advisors.”

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/blue-star-strategies-burisma-hunter-biden-ukraine-prosecutor-access-clinton-campaign-obama-official

28 comments

  • It’s absolutely shameful for the Bidens to drag Ukraine into their circle of corruption. Just imagine if one of Trump’s kids did 1% of this, they would probably be hanging from a tree in a public square. Ukraine’s enemy is Putin, not Republicans or Democrats but the Biden’s thirst for money will destroy any friendship.

    Liked by 3 people

  • Biden is tough on China, like Trump. I don’t think weakening and bashing Joe is smart. We had worse presidents…

    Liked by 3 people

  • onlyfactsplease

    Either way you look at it, this is not good!
    And, this is ammo for every Ruskie troll.

    Liked by 4 people

  • Looks like US politics are just as corrupt as Ukraine’s, or any other country. The whole world is run by fucking corrupt politicians feeding at the pig trough.

    Liked by 4 people

  • Unfortunately these stories are terrible for Ukraine. Fox and other pro-putler outlets will spin the story against Ukraine, when the reality is more complex. Biden Jr worked for Burisma, which was and is owned by an enemy of Ukraine: Mykola Zlocheevsky. The company is registered in the headquarters of putinazi money laundering ; Limassol. The Biden sprog also admitted to taking $3m from Elena Baturina; widow of Yuri Luzkhov, a putinazi mayor of Moscow.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Well if your mortal enemy Fox News is “spinning” something, I hope you point it out and we will cover it here. Amazing the automatic cover ups for Biden’s actions but Trump was chastised for mere comments and suggestions. I do not intend to cover up any corruption, that won’t help Ukraine it will only help spawn more corruption.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Not my mortal enemy. Ukraine’s mortal enemy. You forgot redders that Fox US employs filthy putinoid scum : Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham. Unlike the Australian version, which employs decent people who hate putler, like Alan Jones.

        Liked by 3 people

        • I don’t know any Alan Jones and I have heard Carlson minimize the damage Putin has done but I’ve also heard him call for cracking down on Putin so there’s a mixed bag there. I’ve heard Ingraham a few times but never heard her say anything about Ukraine or Moskovia. These are pretty much figments of your imagination Sir Scradge or straw men, which ever. If you have anything to show me I’d be happy to see it because it would be the opposite of what I’ve seen over the years and never once did I hear any hard news anchors suggest anything bad about Ukraine but you put the whole organization into one basket because of some fragment of criticism of Ukraine apparently. Fox News has done a lot to support Ukraine and brought in members of the Ukrainian caucus hundreds of times since Maidan. I have to conclude this is more about you than Fox News. AND, certainly nothing compare the the Russian leniency given by other outlets that somehow pass by your radar unseen.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Carlson is on camera stating that he is rooting for Russia in its war against Ukraine. He doubled down on that recently stating that in any conflict with Ukraine, the USA should support Russia. I would have thought that you would have known from what I post that I never lie and never bullshit abut what are very serious matters.
            Ingraham is a fluent RussIan speaker, has adopted Russian kids and is a friend of Michael Savage; putler’s biggest shill in America. They all link up. Savage/Alex Jones/Ann Coulter/Carlson. All putler loving bastards. All palsy-walsy. Except Ingraham stopped taking Savage’s calls when she became a big star on Fox.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Ok, then I’d like to see if or read it, no offense, just out of character compared to what I’ve seen and heard.

              Liked by 1 person

                • Ok, thank you, there is one example, if true, with references from Twitter. I should watch Carlson. I have heard him once say he was against the sanctions and that the US is “asking for war against Russia” which is ridiculous.
                  Nevertheless you have seen with your own eyes the main support for Russia and Putin has not come from the right, look at the stand down order from Obama in 2014 and the lack of support since then. Not to mention cancelling the missile shield in Czechia and the radar system in Poland…as part of the 2009 reset. That was more disastrous than anything Carlson could have done. But I don’t hear much from you about that, just Republicans on Fox News, interesting.

                  Liked by 1 person

                  • Carlson has been caught out many times unapologetically and simultaneously praising putler and rubbishing Ukraine.
                    I have been equally critical of both sides. You only have to see a) my posting history and b) my comments history for very clear proof of that. Recently I have been far more critical of the new administration than I was of the last one. If you remember, I especially took the trouble to write you a commiseration note when Trump (unfairly in my view) was defeated. I have always been at pains to point out that my criticism of Trump is purely from the Ukrainian standpoint. As a Britisher I have no problem with him whatsoever. He and I are both half Celts, he likes Britain, likes the Queen, hates Sadiq Khan, supports Brexit and likes Boris.
                    Biden claims to be Irish, even though his name is not remotely Irish. At the time of the Falklands war he was a real statesman; more supportive of Britain than Reagan was, but for some reason, at some point in the 1980’s he decided he would be Irish and started supporting the IRA, like a lot of Dems do. I’m guessing he thought there would be votes in it for him.
                    Before being elected he said he was going to be tougher on putler and more supportive of Ukraine. In fact the reverse happened and I have pointed that out over and over again.
                    What I have also said, also over and over again, is also an indisputable fact. Which is that many; unfortunately most, of the big names in US right wing media circles; and you don’t get much bigger than Carlson, are simultaneously supportive of the rodent and sneeringly dismissive of Ukraine. I find that to be offensive, vile and un-American. Never in history has a mainstream US media brand name supported a fascist dictator. And never in history has a US President praised a fascist dictator. Obama praised turds like the Castros, which is just as bad, but that does not excuse any Republican from behaving just as badly.
                    One final point: Trump (as well as his putlerite friend Flynn) was a Democrat for most of his life. In fact Trump attended an IRA fund raising dinner in New York during his Democrat days. It is all available on YouTube, where you can see the leader of the IRA praising Trump and joking with him.

                    Liked by 1 person

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