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Trump's business network reached alleged Russian mobsters

Trump mob connectionTo expand his real estate developments over the years, Donald Trump, his company and partners repeatedly turned to wealthy Russians and oligarchs from former Soviet republics — several allegedly connected to organized crime, according to a USA TODAY review of court cases, government and legal documents and an interview with a former federal prosecutor.

The president and his companies have been linked to at least 10 wealthy former Soviet businessmen with alleged ties to criminal organizations or money laundering.

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Trump son-in-law met executives of sanctioned Russian bank, will testify

Jared KushnerA Russian bank under Western economic sanctions over Russia's incursion into Ukraine disclosed on Monday that its executives had met Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump's son-in-law and a top White House adviser, in December.

A U.S. Senate committee investigating suspected Russian interference in the election wants to interview Trump associates, including Kushner, 36, who is married to Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump and has agreed to testify.

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Trump claims immunity from 'Apprentice' contestant's lawsuit

Trump claims immunityPresident Trump’s private attorneys asserted in court this week that he should be immune from a defamation lawsuit filed against him because of his presidential duties.

Summer Zervos, a former contestant from The Apprentice, sued Trump in New York on Jan. 17, just days before the inauguration. She came forward in October and accused Trump of kissing and groping her in a Beverly Hills hotel room in 2007. Trump denied the accusation, including a series of tweets calling the sexual misconduct allegations "100% fabricated and made-up charges,” “totally false” and “totally made up nonsense.”

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Watchdog will probe Trump's Mar-a-Lago travel spending

GAO to investigate Mira Lago spendingThe Government Accountability Office watchdog has agreed to review the costs and security precautions related to President Donald Trump's travel and visits to his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla.

The GAO's announcement comes after a request for an investigation from leading congressional Democrats. Since the inauguration, Trump has spent 17 days of his 67 days in office either at Mar-a-Lago or flying up to Washington, D.C, and down to Florida five separate times on Air Force One, The Washington Post reported.

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Sanctions, spies, and oligarchs: Putin’s pet bank and its meeting with Jared Kushner

jared met with Russian bankerJared Kushner, US president Donald Trump’s son-in-law, is to be the latest White House official grilled over the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia, the New York Times reports (paywall). In December Kushner met with Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak alongside fired former national security adviser Mike Flynn, and soon sent a deputy to see Kislyak again.

Then, at Kislyak’s request, Kushner met Sergey Gorkov, the head of Vnesheconombank (VEB)—a meeting that wasn’t previously reported, according to the Times. The Senate’s intelligence committee wants to ask Kushner about those meetings.

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Senate Intelligence to interview Kushner about Russia contacts

Kuschner met with RussiansThe Senate Intelligence Committee will interview President Donald Trump's son-in-law and close adviser Jared Kushner as part of a deepening investigation into communications between Russian officials and Trump allies, two congressional sources said Monday morning.

Investigators' planned interview with Kushner was first reported by the New York Times. Kushner met with the Russian ambassador in December and, according to the Times, also met with the head of a Russian development bank.

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Trump aide Boris Epshteyn leaving White House, officials say

Boris EpshteynBoris Epshteyn, a special assistant to President Donald Trump who leads the White House's television surrogate operations, is expected to leave the White House, potentially for a position outside the West Wing, two senior administration officials have told CNN.

A senior administration official confirmed Epshteyn's expected departure, saying, "We are exploring opportunities within the administration."

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