WASHINGTON – Federal prosecutors are investigating whether current and former Ukrainian officials illegally interfered in the U.S. presidential election, The New York Times reported Thursday, citing people with knowledge on the issue.
The criminal investigation includes examining whether Ukrainian officials used Rudolph Giuliani, then a personal lawyer for former President Donald Trump, to spread misleading claims about current President Joe Biden, The New York Times reported.
The investigation, which began during the last months of the Trump administration, is being handled by federal prosecutors in Brooklyn, New York City, the newspaper reported, and is separate from an ongoing criminal investigation into the deal. of Giuliani in Ukraine.
U.S. prosecutors for New York’s eastern district are investigating whether Ukrainian officials tried to influence the Nov. 3 election by spreading corruption allegations about Biden through various channels, including Giuliani, the newspaper reported. . Biden has denied any offense.
One of the investigated officials is a member of the Ukrainian parliament named Andriy Derkach, the newspaper reported.
The U.S. Treasury Department previously sanctioned Derkach, identifying him as an “active Russian agent for more than a decade.”
Giuliani, who The New York Times said has not been accused of wrongdoing in this investigation, has previously denied representing any Ukrainians.
The U.S. Attorney General’s Office and Arthur Aidala, Giuliani’s attorney, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Giuliani’s trade relations with Ukrainian oligarchs while working as Trump’s lawyer are the subject of an investigation by federal prosecutors in Manhattan. Federal agents searched his home and office in April, seizing phones and computers.
Giuliani has denied the allegations in this investigation and his lawyers have suggested that the investigation has a political motivation.