In this Dec. 12, 2016 photo, Los Angeles venture capitalist Imaad Zuberi, far left, arrives at Trump Tower in New York. Zuberi agreed this month to plead guilty to making illegal campaign contributions on behalf of foreign nationals and concealing his work as a foreign agent as he lobbied high-level U.S. government officials. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

AP Exclusive: Middleman helped Saudi give to Obama inaugural

October 29, 2019 - 10:18 am

Court documents and an analysis of campaign finance records by The Associated Press show that a Saudi tycoon sent hundreds of thousands of dollars to the U.S. to help pay for President Barack Obama's second inauguration with the assistance of a straw donor now facing federal charges in Los Angeles.

The records show that Sheikh Mohammed Al Rahbani was one of several foreign donors who used middleman Imaad Zuberi.

Zuberi has agreed to plead guilty to making illegal campaign contributions and failing to register as a foreign agent.

Rahbani is named in documents in Zuberi's case only as "Person A," but the AP was able to identify him through biographical details and campaign finance records.

Prosecutors have not alleged that the Obama campaign was aware that at least some of Zuberi's donations were financed by foreigners. Rahbani has not been charged and declined to comment.

AP Editorial Categories: