Goldman’s Asset Arm Takes Big Hit On Venezuelan Bond Bloodbath

The fallout from the Venezuelan bond restructuring has claimed a major victim in Goldman Sachs Asset Management, or rather some of the “muppets” who trusted Goldman to invest their money. However, the route which led Goldman to losing a chunk of client money wasn’t just a case of bad judgement, being riddled with the usual mixture of greed, questionable ethics and government intervention. As we detailed in “Goldman Accused Of Funding Maduro’s Dictatorship”.

Goldman controversially purchased $2.8 billion of 2022 bonds in May 2017 in the state-owned oil producer PDVSA, for about $865 million – or about 31 cents on the dollar. This prompted Julio Borges, President of the National Assembly and head of Venezuela’s opposition, to accuse Goldman of “aiding and abetting the country’s dictatorial regime.” Borges threatened that any future democratic government would not recognise or pay on the bonds. In true Goldman fashion, however, the deal was just too lucrative to pass up, or so it seemed at the time, as Goldman paid a then 30% discount to other Venezuelan bonds with a similar maturity.

 

Goldman’s ”defence” was that it did not buy the bonds directly from PDVSA, consequently it did not transfer funds directly to the Venezuelan regime.

To make matters worse, when the Trump White House extended sanctions against Venezuela over the Summer, including a ban on trading Venezuelan debt, Goldman’s bonds were mysteriously exempt. As we argued here.

“the logic is that if Goldman was forced to liquidate the bonds, or worse was stuck holding them as Venezuela went bankrupt, it would take a huge hit on the nearly $3 billion notional position. As such, Goldman’s advisors to Trump made it quite clear that any sanctions against Venezuela would have to be Goldman Sachs revenue neutral first and foremost. That’s precisely what happened.”

We have to acknowledge, however, that the next comment of ours was only half correct.

“Of course, Venezuela’s default is just a matter of time, but it won’t take place before Goldman dumps its bond holdings to some unwitting retail investor or some German widows and orphans.”

It turns out that Goldman had only dumped part of its holdings prior to the expected default, and is sitting on a sizeable loss, as the FT explains.

Ricardo Penfold, a senior portfolio manager at Goldman Sachs Asset Management, earlier this year swooped on a big slice of a bond issued by PDVSA, Venezuela’s state oil company, people familiar with the matter say. Mr Penfold paid $865m for bonds with a face value of $2.8bn — a price of just under 31 cents on the dollar — reflecting the elevated risks of a default even at the time. While GSAM has since sold off chunks of the bond, it was still listed as the single biggest overall owner of the PDVSA bond maturing in 2022, with a face value holding of $1.3bn at the end of the third quarter. But with Thursday’s announcement that Venezuela would seek to restructure all its foreign bonds, the bond is now trading at 25 cents on the dollar, down from 29 cents at the start of last week. That would translate into a paper loss of $54m in just five days if GSAM has not reduced its stake since the end of the third quarter…

 

GSAM is listed as the single biggest overall owner of PDVSA debts, according to Bloomberg data based on fund filings, with $1.8bn of face value holdings.

 

A Goldman spokesman said: “We are monitoring this situation closely.” The summer deal was particularly controversial, attracting condemnation from the Venezuelan opposition and US senator Marco Rubio, because it in effect constituted a cash infusion for the increasingly autocratic government led by Nicolás Maduro. GSAM bought the bond via an intermediary, but it was sold by the central bank.

As we said, and other analysts agree, Goldman should have seen it coming. From the FT article.

Many investors who had been betting that Venezuela would manage to avoid defaulting are nursing losses. Venezuelan bonds suffered a drubbing in the wake of Mr Maduro announcing plans to restructure the country’s $89bn debt pile. “This has been a well-telegraphed train wreck,” said Robert Koenigsberger, head of Gramercy, an emerging markets-focused asset manager.

 

“There are reasons to expect that prices will go even lower from here.” GSAM and other big Venezuelan bond investors — such as Fidelity, T Rowe Price and Ashmore — could still end up making money from their Venezuelan bond purchases, as analysts expect the ultimate “recovery value” on Venezuelan debt to be higher than where the bonds are trading at now.

While the article suggests the possibility of a more favourable exit for Goldman in due course, the restructuring of Venezuelan debt is not going to be a “plain vanilla” variety. Indeed, it might be more complicated than any previous sovereign debt restructuring. The irony for Goldman, as the FT explains, is that the extension of sanctions by the US Government will make it much harder for the bank to recover its losses.

Venezuela’s plans to restructure its debts are riddled with complications. The mess of bonds issued by the country and PDVSA are hard to disentangle, and oil exports — the country’s sole financial lifeline — are vulnerable to seizures from litigious creditors. However, the biggest wrinkle is the US government’s sanctions on Venezuela, unveiled in August after the GSAM deal. In practice, they prohibit any US institutions from involvement in any Venezuelan debt restructuring.

 

“Sanctions will prevent a conventional exchange offer,” said Lee Buchheit, a senior partner at Cleary Gottlieb, who has represented a series of countries when they restructure their debts. “It’s really not clear what Maduro has in mind, or whether he even has anything in mind.”

 

Venezuela owes about $750m in bond arrears and is facing a further $965m of interest payments over November and December, calculates Patrick Esteruelas, global head of research at Emso Asset Management. If Caracas has run out of money — and Russia or China decline to extend more loans to Venezuela — it will have to default. But as long as US sanctions remain in place, this will push Venezuela into financial purgatory of a protracted, unresolvable debt default. “In a world where you can’t pay and you can’t restructure, all you can do is default,” Mr Koenigsberger said. “Even without the sanction, this would have been an exceptionally tough debt restructuring. It will now be exponentially harder than anything we have seen before. And I don’t think that is priced in yet.”

It will be tragically amusing to watch what extraordinary measures the heavily Goldman-influenced White House takes to bail the bank out of its latest predicament.

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These Are The Two Heroes Who Stopped Texas Church Shooter Devin Patrick Kelley

As details about yesterday’s shooting at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas started trickling out, witnesses and police sources shared how one brave man with a rifle confronted and shot  suspected killer Devin Kelly, forcing him to flee.

A  high-speed pursuit ensued, which ended when Kelly’s car crashed into a ditch. Police said they found Kelly dead in his vehicle, but it isn’t clear how he died.

However, two men who reportedly helped stop the shooter are now being hailed as selfless heros – “good guys with guns” who potentially saved dozens of lives by stopping the killer before he could murder more innocent people.  As Sheriff Joe Tackitt pointed out in an interview with CNN, “there’s another church right down the road,” suggesting that the killer could’ve headed there next after murdering more than half of First Baptist’s congregation if he had not been stopped.

My San Antonio is now reporting that the man who confronted Kelly outside the church is Stephen Willeford, a sharp-shooting plumber with no military background who managed to shoot Kelly – who was reportedly dressed in tactical gear – prompting him to flee the scene. Earlier media reports identified Willeford as being a neighbor of the church.

Stephen Willeford

As Willeford exchanged gunfire with Kelly outside the church, a second man – identified as Johnny Langendorff – pulled over when he witnessed the carnage and saw Kelly speed off. Willeford saw Langendorff and quickly rushed to his car.

Here’s more from My San Antonio:

Johnny Langendorff was one of the men who chased after suspected killer Devin Kelley, a 26-year-old from Comal County, he told KSAT  in a television interview.

 

“I pulled up to the intersection where the shooting happened and I saw two men exchanging gunfire,” Langendorff said, noting the shooter and another local were shooting at each other.

 

Once the gunman fled the church grounds in his vehicle, Langendorff said the other man came to his car.

 

“The other gentleman said we needed to pursue (the shooter) because he shot up the church,” he said. “So that’s what I did. I just acted.”

 

“So we were doing about 95 mph, going around traffic and everything,” he added.

 

The pair chased the man down FM 539 headed North before the shooter lost control and ran off the roadway. Langendorff said the other man with him jumped out of the car and drew his rifle on Kelley.

 

“He didn’t move after that,” Langendorff said.

According to the New York Post, Texas Department of Public Safety chief Freeman Martin said Willeford “grabbed his rifle and engaged the suspect” after Kelley left the First Baptist Church. An area resident told the paper that Willeford, an avid biker who attends another church, learned about the shooting when his daughter called to say a man clad in body armor was shooting worshipers.

The local said that although Willeford has no military background, he didn’t hesitate when he came face to face with the suspect — and managed to squeeze off a round that struck the gunman, who had dropped his Ruger AR-15 variant.

Kelley had taken a hostage in his SUV’s passenger seat before fleeing, the local man told the paper.

Devin Patrick Kelley

According to Langendorff, it took cops about five to seven minutes to arrive. In the meantime, they kept a gun trained on Kelley.

“The police arrived and they pushed us back and they took care of the rest,” he said.

Langendorff’s girlfriend, Summer Caddel, said Kelley died a few feet away from Langendorff.

Johnny Langendorff

The local man, who knows both heroes, said Willeford made sure Kelley’s hostage was outside the vehicle when they approached the SUV.

Authorities are now reporting that between 12 and 14 children were among the 26 fatalities of the shooting. Another 20 people were injured. Police said not all of the victims were shot inside the church, but declined to elaborate.

Yesterday’s church shooting was the deadliest mass shooting in Texas history, and the deadliest shooting at a church in US history.
 

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Pentagon Says Securing North Korean Nuclear Sites Would Require “Ground Invasion”

With President Donald Trump arriving in Japan today to kick off a 10-day Asia tour, the Washington Post is reporting that the only way to locate and secure all of North Korea’s nuclear weapons sites “with complete certainty” would be …

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Saudis Call Missile Attack “Blatant Act Of Aggression” By Iran, “Could Be Considered Act Of War”

War is coming…

This weekend’s chaos in the middle east just got considerably more serious.

Yesterday we detailed reports that the Saudis intercepted a ballistic missile over the nation’s capital Riyadh…

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— ????? ???????? (@anba_Alsaudia) November 4, 2017

At the time, Al Jazeera reported that Yemen’s Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for the attack, saying they launched the Yemeni-made, long-range ballistic missile Burqan 2-H (with a range of 500 kilometers) from the Saudi-Yemeni border before being intercepted.

But tonight, according to a statement from the Saudi coailition carried by the state-run Saudi Press Agency, the missile that targeted Riyadh has been called “a direct military aggresion” by Iran against Sauid Arabia,  that “could rise to be considered an act of war.” Furthermore, the Saudi-led coalition has closed all Yemen’s land, sea and air ports after missile targeted Riyadh.

Following on what the Coalition had previously announced regarding the ballistic missiles launched by the Iranian-controlled Houthi militias from within Yemeni territory that targeted the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the most recent of which was the flagrant military aggression by the Iranian-controlled Houthi militias which targeted the city of Riyadh on November 11, 2017 (Corresponding to 15/2/1439 Hijri) using a ballistic missile with a range of more than 900 Km.

 

And, after the thorough examination of the debris of these missiles, including the missile launched on July 22, 2017 (Corresponding to 28/10/1438 Hijri) by experts in military technology, has confirmed the role of Iran’s regime in manufacturing these missiles and smuggling them to the Houthi militias in Yemen for the purpose of attacking the Kingdom, its people, and vital interests.

 

The Coalition’s command considers the Iranian regime’s action in supplying the Houthi militias that it commands with these missiles to be a blatant violation of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolutions that prohibit nations from arming these militias, specifically UNSC Resolution (2216). Further, Iran’s role and its direct command of its Houthi proxy in this matter constitutes a clear act of aggression that targets neighboring countries, and threatens peace and security in the region and globally.

 

Therefore, the Coalition’s Command considers this a blatant act of military aggression by the Iranian regime, and could rise to be considered as an act of war against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and thus affirms the legitimate right of the Kingdom to defend its territory and people in accordance with Article (51) of the U.N. Charter. The Coalition Command also affirms that the Kingdom reserves its right to respond to Iran in the appropriate time and manner, in accordance with international law and based upon the right of self-defense, including the defense of its territory, its people, and its vital interests, which is enshrined in international agreements and conventions including the UN Charter.

 

To address the vulnerabilities in the current inspection procedures that led to the continuation of the supply of ballistic missiles and military equipment to the Houthi militias which enabled them to continue to commit crimes against the Kingdom, the Yemeni people, and the peoples of countries in the region, which constitutes blatant violations to international humanitarian laws, the Coalition’s Command has decided to temporarily close all Yemeni ground, air, and sea ports. These measures will be implemented while taking into consideration the continuation of the entry and exit of humanitarian supplies and crews in accordance with the Coalition’s updated procedures.

 

The Coalition Command calls upon all relevant parties to adhere to the inspections, entry, and exit procedures to and from Yemeni ports of entry designated by the Coalition that will be announced later. All necessary legal steps will be taken against violators of these procedures. The Coalition Command calls upon the brethren Yemeni people and all civilian and humanitarian crews to avoid areas of combat operations, areas populated by the Houthi armed militia, areas and ports exploited by this Iranian-controlled militia to smuggle weapons, and areas from which this militia launch its attacks against the Kingdom. The Coalition also calls upon diplomatic missions to avoid areas that are not controlled by the Legitimate Government of Yemen.

 

The Coalition Command calls upon the international community and the United Nations Security Council including the sanctions committee established by the Council for the implementation of UNSC Resolution 2216, to take all necessary legal measures to hold Iran accountable for its violation of UN Security Council Resolutions, primarily resolution 2216, in addition to its violations of provisions and principles of international law that criminalize the aggression against other states, due to: Iran’s direct involvement in the unlawful smuggling of weapons to the Houthi Militia under its control, which threatens international peace and security; its aggression against the territory and people of Saudi Arabia and other neighboring countries; and its continued support for the Houthi militia in violation of international resolutions that aim to restore legitimacy in Yemen.

The timing is fascinating.

What better way to get the price of oil up before an Aramco IPO – which President Trump just happened to mention out of the blue.

And amid increasing evidence of Saudi rapprochement with Russia and China – and the growing de-dollarization of the anti-unipolar world – a Saudi war with Iran would require the latter to be supported by Washington to survive… which perhaps could be quid pro quo for ending any chatter about the death of the petrodollar.

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Trump Wanted Japan’s “Samurai Warriors” To Shoot Down North Korean Missiles: Report

Ahead of Trump’s visit to Asia, there were understandable concerns that a diplomatic snafu was imminent. Those concerns were partially justified after a report from Japan Times according to which Trump said Japan should have shot down the North Korean …

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Eric Peters: “The Next Market Cleanse Will Be Sharp, Deep, Fast And Feel Like The End Of The World”

The latest weekend note by Eric Peters, CIO of One River Asset Management, is his latest masterpiece in lyrical, stream of consciousness, financial analysis, and can be broadly divided into to broad parts: his latest take on financial markets analyzing…

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Democratic Leaders’ Responses To Brazile Allegations Expose A Widening Rift

Donna Brazile’s shocking revelations about how the Clinton campaign rigged the 2016 primary to favor Hillary and disadvantage the insurgent press of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders have exposed a divide in the Democratic Party that is manifesting itself in the stark difference in tone between establishment figures, who’ve crticized Brazile and sought to rebut her claims, and members of the party’s progressive wing, who’ve offered messages of support.

Nowhere is this contrast more evident than in the responses from Tom Perez, who took over from Brazile as permanent DNC Chairman late last year, and Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison, who had challenged Perez’s bid for the chairmanship of the party.

As USA Today pointed out, at issue are the joint funding agreements signed by the presidential campaigns for Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders, which allowed whoever won the nomination to take control of the party. Perez explained in a statement that the joint fundraising agreements were the same for both Clinton and Sanders.

While both men pledged to reform the party in the wake of revelations that Obama left it in debt and that it was financially ill-prepared for the 2016 race,

“Our understanding was that the DNC offered all of the presidential campaigns the opportunity to set up a JFA and work with the DNC to coordinate on how those funds were used to best prepare for the general election,” Perez said.

 

Here’s a note Tom Perez sent out to DNC members. Says agreement was same for both Clinton and Sanders campaigns pic.twitter.com/9VfHjuLHto

— Scott Detrow (@scottdetrow) November 3, 2017

Meanwhile, Ellison, who was handed the party vice-chairmanship as a sop following his surprisingly strong challenge against Perez, said in a statement published by the Washington Post that Brazile’s allegatins shouldn’t be ignored.

“We must heed the call for our party to enact real reforms that ensure a fair, open and impartial nominating process in elections to come,” he said in a statement published Friday by The Washington Post.

 

“I’m committed to working with Chairman Perez to make the DNC more transparent and accountable to the American people, whether that’s by ensuring that debates are scheduled far ahead of time or by guaranteeing that the terms of joint fundraising agreements give no candidate undue control or influence over the party.”

Still, both Perez and Ellison emphasized that they would work with the DNC’s Unity Reform Commission on reforms for the party.

Meanwhile, Perez appeared on NBC’s State of the Union to push back against Brazile’s claims about Clinton’s health.

“She was tireless she was a workhorse what saddens me more than anything is that after people read that….they’ll start wondering about other claims in the book.”

In an interview, former Sanders campaign manager Jeff Weaver said that the JFA, by its nature, benefited the candidate who could set up high-dollar fundraisers, and that the DNC did not help Sanders organize large donors.

“Who are the wealthy people Bernie was going to bring to a fundraiser?” Weaver asked. “They never set up a single event.”

Zerlina Maxwell, formerly the director of progressive media for the Clinton campaign, took to CBS to respond to Brazile’s claims. The aide’s tone was critical, but during the interview, she appeared to corroborate what Brazile said.

“She is correct that under Obama the DNC languished and that DWS didn’t do a good enough job. The committee was broke when the 2016 election came around.

Maxwell added that relitigating the 2016 race doesn’t help the party move forward.

“As a party, relitigating 2016 doesn’t get us anywhere.”

She also made the absurd claim that the party was too broke and incompetent to rig the primary.

“The Democratic party was broke; they didn’t have the capacity to rig the election against Bernie. I think the timing couldn’t be worse in terms of where the party needs to go going forward. We need space for us to be more transparent as a party and focus on what the opposition is, which is the Trump administration, and the policies they’re putting forward.”

Overall, some of her rebuttals echoed those listed in an open letter to Brazile signed by more than 100 Clinton campaign staffers.

Most notably, Sen. Elizabeth Warren said the party needs to change its procedures for selecting candidates, and if changes aren’t made the party will have “a real problem.”

“My reaction to it is the conversation I had with Tom Perez...I said look Tom your number one job is to bring in Bernie and Bernie supporters and the people in this country who don’t have confidence in the Democratic Party and its process…you need to ensure that the Democratic party works for the people…not the other way around.”

 

Warren added that Perez is “being tested” and that there are negotiations going on to possibly change the rules surrounding the selection of the next nominee, and that the rules going forward “are rules that are fair for everyone.”

The DNC will meet next month to hear recommendations from a “unity commission” that has met four times, in four cities, to research problems with the primary process and debate reforms. Multiple state Democratic chairs are lobbying specifically for new language in the party bylaws about JFAs, an issue that might be forced at a later meeting.

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New FOIA Documents Reveal FBI Scramble To Preserve Records In Uranium One Scandal

Submitted by iBankCoin.com

An internet researcher has uncovered what appears to be proof that the FBI was investigating the Uranium One deal back in 2015 – months after the Peter Schweizer book Clinton Cash exposed the scheme, along with an article in the New York Times which laid out allegations of criminal malfeasance by the Clintons, their charitable foundation, and several associates.

Twitter user Katica (@GOPPollAnalyst) – who notably discovered Hillary Clinton’s IT guy ‘Stonetear’ asking Reddit users how to strip Clinton’s name from archived emails – discovered several Preservation and Records requests sent by an FBI special agent to various agencies involved in the approval of the Uranium One deal on August 28th, 2015, as first published by The Conservative Treehouse. Katica found the requests buried in an FBI file released via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

Revealing Timeline

While the Clinton email investigation was launched in March of 2015 after it was revealed that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton used a personal server and non-approved email accounts to conduct government business, reports from August, 2015 revealed that the FBI investigation was actually a criminal probe – though most assumed it was simply covering Clinton’s mishandling of classified information and not the content of her emails.

What Katica discovered is that weeks after the criminal probe began, the FBI sent notices to every agency involved in the Uranium One approval process to preserve records.

This is huge… 

The agencies which received the request included the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the U.S. Dept. of Treasury, the Office of Director of National Intelligence (ODNI James Clapper), The National Counter Terrorism Center, and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

Five days after the initial request, the same FBI agent sent another round of notifications to the same agencies, adding the National Security Agency (NSA) and the U.S. Secret Service (USSS).

The next day, September 3rd, 2015three more agencies were added to the preservation request: The CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the Department of Defense (DOD)

At this point, every single member of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) which signed off on the Uranium One deal was served with a notice to preserve records. 

As The Conservative Treehouse notes:

It would be intellectually dishonest not to see the very likely attachment of the special agent’s action.  That is to say an FBI probe originating as an outcome of information retrieved in parallel to the timing of the “criminal probe” of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s email use.

 

The sequence of events highlights a criminal probe starting [early August 2015], followed by notifications to the “Uranium One” CFIUS participants [late August 2015].

 

If you consider the larger Clinton timeline; along with the FBI special agent requests from identified participants; and overlay the Nuclear Regulatory Commission as the leading entity surrounding the probe elements; and the fact that the CFIUS participants were the recipients of the retention requests;  well, it’s just too coincidental to think this is unrelated to the Uranium One deal and the more alarming implications.

FBI Mole 

Let’s not forget a bombshell report from The Hill two weeks ago which revealed that as early as 2009, the FBI – led by Robert Mueller at the time, had a mole in the Russian uranium industry, and that the agency had evidence that “Russian nuclear officials had routed millions of dollars to the U.S. designed to benefit former President Bill Clinton’s charitable foundation during the time Secretary of State Hillary Clinton served on a government body that provided a favorable decision to Moscow” – a deal which would grant the Kremlin control over 20 percent of America’s uranium supply. 

The mole was forced to sign an iron-clad non-disclosure agreement (NDA) which threatened criminal penalties for revealing information, even to Congress. After a request was made by Reps Ron DeSantis (R-FL) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) calling for the Justice department to invalidate the NDA, the gag order was lifted, and the FBI informant was authorized to speak with congress.

BREAKING: DOJ authorizes FBI Informant to speak with Congress concerning alleged corruption involving Clintons & Uranium One. #MAGA #DTS

— Lou Dobbs (@LouDobbs) October 25, 2017

Tony Podesta and Uranium One

While one-time Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort turned himself in to the FBI a week ago on charges of money laundering, let’s not forget what a former Podesta Group executive interviewed by Special Counsel Robert Mueller told Tucker Carlson Tonight: the FBI probe is now focusing on people in Washington who have worked as de-facto operatives on behalf of Russian government and business. To that end, he had quite a bit to say about his former boss Tony and his relationship to the Uranium One deal.

  • In late 2013 or early 2014, Tony Podesta and a representative for the Clinton Foundation met to discuss how to help Uranium One – the Russian owned company that controls 20 percent of American Uranium Production – and whose board members gave over $100 million to the Clinton Foundation.
  • In 2013, John Podesta recommended that Tony hire David Adams, Hillary Clinton’s chief adviser at the State Department, giving them a “direct liaison” between the group’s Russian clients and Hillary Clinton’s State Department.
  • “Tony Podesta was basically part of the Clinton Foundation.”

As far as the current state of the FBI investigation, “They are more focused on facilitators of Russian influence in this country than they are on election collusion,” Carlson’s source told Fox.

Tying it together – previous reports of Federal investigations into the Clinton Foundation: 

Katica’s FOIA discovery corroborates a New York Times report from November 1, 2016, which asserts that an FBI investigation was kicked off based on revelations of pay-for-play in the book “Clinton Cash” written by Peter Schweizer:

The investigation, based in New York, had not developed much evidence and was based mostly on information that had surfaced in news stories and the book “Clinton Cash,” according to several law enforcement officials briefed on the case.

 

The book asserted that foreign entities gave money to former President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Foundation, and in return received favors from the State Department when Mrs. Clinton was secretary of state. Mrs. Clinton has adamantly denied those claims. -NYT

The Wall St. Journal also reported last October that five FBI field offices were investigating the Clinton Foundation; New York, Los Angeles, Washington, Little Rock and  Miami, and “were collecting information about the Clinton Foundation to see if there was evidence of financial crimes or influence-peddling, according to people familiar with the matter.”

The FBI field office in New York had done the most work on the Clinton Foundation case and received help from the FBI field office in Little Rock, the people familiar with the matter said. –WSJ

And in November, as tweeted by Wikileaks and reported on by the Dallas Observer, the Clinton Foundation has been under investigation by the IRS since July of 2016, after 64 GOP members of Congress received letters urging them to push for an investigation. The investigation has been notably held at the Dallas IRS office – far away from Washington.

The Earle Cabell Federal Building in downtown Dallas is an all purpose office complex, a bastion of federal bureaucracy located at 1100 Commerce St. Most people come for a passport or to get business done in front of a federal judge. But inside, a quiet review is underway that has direct ties to the raging presidential election: The local branch of the IRS’ Tax Exempt and Government Entities Division is reviewing the tax status of the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation.

So – while the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton was sold as a simple matter of mishandling of classified material, we now have proof that the FBI set their sights on the Uranium One scandal weeks after they began looking into Hillary Clinton’s emails. We also know that five FBI field offices and the IRS have been investigating the Clinton Foundation on accusations of pay-to-play and other criminal acts. 

Bets on who’s indicted next?

Flashback to October 27, 2016

Wallace Says HARD NEW PROOF Hillary Clinton Foundation/Bill & State Colluded 4PAY4PLAYS via Doug Band #PodestaEmails20 ‘s #Thursdaythoughts pic.twitter.com/CxOpiKtW3w

— ????STOCK MONSTER???? (@StockMonsterUSA) October 27, 2016

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Another Mueller Leak Suggests Charges Loom For Mike Flynn & Son

It appears Special Counsel Robert Mueller has a serial leaker. Following last weekend’s well-timed leak of Manafort’s looming arrest – which dominated the weekend media’s speculation – NBC News reports sources familiar confirming federal investigators have gathered enough evidence to bring charges in their investigation of President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser and his son.

As a reminder, Flynn was fired in February following public revelations that he had lied to Vice President Pence about his dealings with the Russian ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak.

Michael Flynn, who was fired after just 24 days on the job, was one of the first Trump associates to come under scrutiny in the federal probe into possible collusion between Moscow and the Trump campaign.

A week after the Manafort, Gates, Papadopoulos ‘smoking guns’ hit the headlines, “multiple sources familiar with the investigation” that Mueller is set to apply pre pressure to Mike Flynn (and his son). As NBC News reports, the investigators are speaking to multiple witnesses in coming days to gain more information surrounding Flynn’s lobbying work, including whether he laundered money or lied to federal agents about his overseas contacts, according to three sources familiar with the investigation.

Mueller’s team is also examining whether Flynn attempted to orchestrate the removal of a chief rival of Turkish President Recep Erdogan from the U.S. to Turkey in exchange for millions of dollars, two officials said.

 

Flynn’s son, Michael G. Flynn, who worked closely with his father, accompanied him during the campaign and briefly worked on the presidential transition, could be indicted separately or at the same time as his father, according to three sources familiar with the investigation.

 

 

If the elder Flynn is willing to cooperate with investigators in order to help his son, two of the sources said, it could also change his own fate, potentially limiting any legal consequences.

NBC concludes that the pressure on Flynn is the latest signal that Mueller is moving at a rapid, and steady, pace in his investigation. Last week, investigators unsealed indictments of Manafort and Manafort’s business partner Rick Gates. They pleaded not guilty.

It’s also notable that nothing that hit last week ties Trump directly to collusion with Russia, just as the charges for Flynn do not; but just as is the case with Manafort and Gates, Mueller appears to believe applying pressure to these ‘bad actors’ will force them to release details about President Trump (which a year-long investigation has failed to find).

Both Flynns have for months been subjects of the Mueller investigation

The elder Flynn, an Army lieutenant general, was pushed out as head of the Defense Intelligence Agency in 2014 and retired from the military. He then founded a lobbying firm, Flynn Intel Group, where his son worked closely with him.

 

The younger Flynn was involved in the daily operations of his father’s firm and functioned as his chief of staff. He often attended meetings with his father and would communicate with prospective clients.

 

The elder Flynn was paid $530,000 last year for work the Justice Department says benefited the government of Turkey.

 

The elder Flynn did not register as a foreign lobbyist at the time, but did so retroactively this year. The issue has been part of Mueller’s probe.

 

His lawyer later said Flynn didn’t need to register because his client was a Turkish businessman and not a government official, but had opted to do so retroactively.

One wonders, given the above ‘sources’ reporting, how long before charges are brought against Tony Podesta with regard his Foreign Agent Registration status?

We leave it to Flynn’s son to conclude…

The SJW are out in full this morning….the disappointment on your faces when I don’t go to jail will be worth all your harassment…

— ????????MFLYNNJR???????? (@mflynnJR) November 5, 2017

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Ousted Catalan Leader Turns Himself In To Belgian Police

Ousted Catalan president Carles Puigdemont and four ex-ministers on Sunday turned themselves in to Belgian authorities to start the process of their possible extradition to Spain. Puigdemont was accompanied by four other former Catalan officials who ar…

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