Feds announce indictment in massive bribery scheme connected to Hillary Clinton’s Uranium One deal

Feds announce indictment in massive bribery scheme connected to Hillary Clinton’s Uranium One deal
An indictment was handed out Friday in relation to bribery scheme connected to the Uranium One scandal. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

A federal indictment connected to the infamous “Uranium One” deal facilitated by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration was announced Friday.

What happened?

The Department of Justice announced an 11-count indictment against Mark Lambert in connection to a Russian bribery scheme involving the Uranium One sale. Lambert is the “former co-president of a Maryland-based transportation company that provides services for the transportation of nuclear materials to customers in the United States and abroad,” the DOJ said in a statement.

He was charged with one account of conspiracy to violate the the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and to commit wire fraud, seven counts of violating the FCPA, two counts of wire fraud and one count of international promotion money laundering, the DOJ said. More from the DOJ:

The charges stem from an alleged scheme to bribe Vadim Mikerin, a Russian official at JSC Techsnabexport (TENEX), a subsidiary of Russia’s State Atomic Energy Corporation and the sole supplier and exporter of Russian Federation uranium and uranium enrichment services to nuclear power companies worldwide, in order to secure contracts with TENEX.

beginning at least as early as 2009 and continuing until October 2014, Lambert conspired with others at “Transportation Corporation A” to make corrupt and fraudulent bribery and kickback payments to offshore bank accounts associated with shell companies, at the direction of, and for the benefit of, a Russian official, Vadim Mikerin, in order to secure improper business advantages and obtain and retain business with TENEX.

A National Review expose on the Uranium One scandal explains that TENEX is the commercial agent responsible for the sale and transportation of uranium to the U.S. It is also a Kremlin-controlled company and a subsidiary of Rosatom, Russia’s state-controlled nuclear company.

More details:

The bribery scheme deal was first reported last October. According to a report from The Hill, federal investigators began collecting evidence about crimes surrounding the deal in 2009.

The Hill reported the “FBI had gathered substantial evidence that Russian nuclear industry officials were engaged in bribery, kickbacks, extortion and money laundering designed to grow Vladimir Putin’s atomic energy business inside the United States.” The report added:

Federal agents used a confidential U.S. witness working inside the Russian nuclear industry to gather extensive financial records, make secret recordings and intercept emails as early as 2009 that showed Moscow had compromised an American uranium trucking firm with bribes and kickbacks in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, FBI and court documents show.

They also obtained an eyewitness account — backed by documents — indicating 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, sources told The Hill.

The report went on to state the DOJ kept Congress and the American public in the dark about corrupt Russian nuclear activities happening on U.S. soil during a time when the Obama administration “made two major decisions benefiting Putin’s commercial nuclear ambitions.”

What is the Uranium One scandal?

The Uranium One scandal is a controversy in which the Obama administration permitted “the sale of U.S. uranium mining facilities to Russia’s state atomic energy company,” according to NBC News. Multiple government agencies had to approve the sale and the Clintons were key players in securing the deal.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions initiated further investigation into the scandal last month. He has even looked into the possibility of opening a separate probe to investigate Clinton’s involvement in the deal.