Several federal prosecutors said Monday they are “likely” to file new criminal charges in a pending case involving Ukrainian partners of Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, in his eventual efforts to get the Ukrainian government to investigate the Biden family.
“We believe there is likely to be a larger indictment,” Prosecutor Douglas Zolkind said, according to different local media, during a hearing in Manhattan District Court over the case of Giuliani’s associates Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, and two other men, Andrey Kukushkin and David Correia.
The prosecutor said no firm decision has been made on whether to file additional charges against these men, who are accused of using foreign money to make illegal campaign contributions.
Prosecutors say the donations were made while the men were pressuring U.S. politicians to expel the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine. “We continue to evaluate,” Zolkind told Judge J. Paul Oetken.
The prosecution contends that Parnas and Fruman were assisting Giuliani in an effort to get the Ukrainian government to initiate investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son.
That effort, and Trump’s participation in it, is the subject of the ongoing impeachment proceedings against Trump in the House of Representatives.
Parnas was the only one of the defendants present at Monday’s hearing. The other men had their presences excused.
Prosecutor Zolkind gave an approximate account of the amount of material seized in connection with the case since the four men were indicted in October.
That material includes phone, bank and Internet records obtained from witnesses and companies related to the charges.
Prosecutors have collected thousands of files that currently add up to about nine gigabytes of data, Zolkind said.
Much of the information was obtained through subpoenas and search warrants were issued to access email and iCloud accounts and physical premises, he said. “There are additional things to come,” Zolkind said.
Defense attorneys, for their part, complained of the vast amount of potential evidence they would have to examine without clarity from prosecutors about what could be used in a trial.
Parnas’ attorney Joseph Bondy requested that the court loosen Parnas’ bail conditions.
Parnas is currently under house arrest and uses a GPS monitoring device.
Bondy requested to be allowed to go out a few hours a day for a few days each week to exercise, spend time with her children and get some fresh air. Prosecutors strongly opposed the proposal.
Zolkind said Parnas, who was arrested at an airport outside Washington, D.C., with a one-way ticket from the United States, “presents a significant risk” of escape.
The judge ordered Bondy to make a request about the condition of Parnas’ release to the office that supervises defendants released on bail. The defendants are scheduled to appear again in court on February 2.