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Russia meets DC meets FARA meets LDA series 1 of 3

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Posted on May 29 2018

Obligatory caveat:

Provided you adhere to FARA and/or LDA statutes, there’s nothing illegal about lobbying. Granted the pubic optics of “paying for access”, it’s not a good look and the Court of Public Opinion can and should be harsh, coupled with healthy  dose of skepticism.

 

The ugly reality is this is how things in the District of Columbia (DC) ThunderDome. Also you won’t see my referring to my City as “The Swamp”. Historically speaking DC was NOT built on swamp land. Ever. That’s a persistent falsehood, that is just factually incorrect. DC

 

 

🇷🇺 Remember these numbers 🇷🇺

 

#5934 #6353  #3731

 

 

 

Endeavor Law Firm, PC #5934

Two primary clients: Oleg Deripaska and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, per Endeavor’s filing Deripaska & Lavrov “hired” Endeavor to:

 

“...provided general legal advice regarding legislative, trade, foreign policy, investment, security, and investigated joint business opportunities in the energy industry in the United States including biofuels and natural gas.”

 

 

🇷🇺May 2016🇷🇺

 

Supplemental FARA filing see pages 10-12, here 

If you take the time to read FARA filings, more often then naught you can learn some interesting things. For example This FARA filing disclosed Deripaska hired this “law” firm to lobbying on behalf of US Rusal AND Chinese Metal Policy, there’s a ”partnership” with Deripaska and Volnoe Delo Foundation. Oh and Russia has an ebola vaccine. 

 

Also Volnoe Delo Foundation is in fact Oleg Deripaska’s Foundation, more into can be found here it also appears his Foundation hasn’t been updated, if you click on the “news” tab, the last article is from August 2016, link here

Endeavor Law Firm, PC ("Registrant") acted as counsel in Washington D.C. for Mr. Oleg Deripaska ("Mr. Deripaska") on political, legal and regulatory, and philanthropic matters.

 

Specifically, Registrant:

 

1.  Promoted UC Rusal’s business interests;

2.  Consulted with UC Rusal on matters related to the global bauxite markets, global forestry initiative, clean aluminum initiative; Chinese metal policy; Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, mining operations in Guinea and Jamaica; Russian ebola vaccine; energy policies

3.  Explored philanthropic partnerships between the Volnoe Delo Foundation, political developments in Jamaica, animal welfare and U.S.-based foundations in areas of education, culture, domestic and global health and global development and served as legal counsel to Mr. Deripaska on a broad range of matters. 

 

 

 🇷🇺December 2016🇷🇺

 

This is where Deripaska adds:

Canadian Energy Policy aluminum markets and Russian science including ebola vaccine, energy policies to his December 2016 FARA filings, link found here

 

In addition to the activities described in response Question 12, Endeavor Law Firm, PC ("Registrant") acted as counsel in Washington, D.C. for Mr. Oleg Deripaska ("Mr. Deripaska") on political, legal and regulatory, and philanthropic matters.

 

Specifically, Registrant:


1. Promoted UC Rusal's business interests;


2. Consulted with UC Rusal on matters related to the global bauxite and aluminum markets, global forestry initiative, clean aluminum initiative; Chinese metal policy; Canadian energy policy; Extractive industries Transparency Initiative, mining operations in Guinea and Jamaica; Russian science including ebola vaccine energy policies; global climate policy


3. Explored philanthropic partnerships for the Volnoe Delo Foundation relating to political developments in Jamaica and Guinea, animalwelfare and U.S.-based foundations in areas of education, culture, domestic and global health and global development and served as legal counsel to Mr. Deripaska on a broad range of matters.

 

 

🚨sidebar, in May of 2017, Oleg Deripaska sued the Associated Press, citing assault libel and slander. I refer you to pages 3 and 4 thru 11. Deripaska original complaint can be found, here 

Associated Press acted with actual malice in publishing the Article because prior to publication it knew that such statements were false, or at minimum entertained doubts about the truth of the defamatory statements contained in the article.

In addition to the Article’s overtly false and defamatory statements, the Article is structured to imply falsely that Mr. Deripaska’s commercial dealings from the period between 2005 and 2009 were somehow related to alleged criminal conduct and improprieties related to the campaign of then-presidential candidate Donald J. Trump and the 2016 U.S. Presidential election (hereinafter the “Trump Campaign Controversy”).

In its opening line, the Article asserts: “Before signing up with Donald Trump, former campaign manager Paul Manafort secretly worked for a Russian billionaire with a plan to ‘greatly benefit the Putin Government,’ The Associated Press has learned.” The Article continues: “Manafort pitched the plans to aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska, a close Putin ally with whom Manafort eventually signed a $10 million annual contract beginning in 2006.” According to the Article, these “plans” were set forth in a memo written by Mr. Manafort in 2005 (hereinafter the “2005 Manafort Memo”).

 

 

On October 17, 2017 Deripaska lawsuit was dismissed, with prejudice. In the 21 page Order and Memorandum Judge Huvelle concluded:

 

...”Upon consideration of the motions, opposition, and record, the Court finds that Deripaska has failed to state a claim upon which relief can be granted and therefore grants the defendant’s motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6). A separate Memorandum Opinion, ECF No. 16, addresses the AP’s Anti-SLAPP special motion to dismiss.”

“The complaint is dismissed with prejudice for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. A separate Memorandum Opinion, ECF No. 14, denying the AP’s special motion to dismiss accompanies this Memorandum Opinion.“

Link to Judge Huvelle’s 21 page Order & Memo can be found, here

 

I mean I’m certain it’s merely a coincidence that Deripaska hired BOIES SCHILLER FLEXNER LLP to file suit again the AP, right? See page 12 of Deripaska’s v AP lawsuit linked above. Lest we forget Deripaska hired the same law firm who’s currently representing:

  • Elliot Broidy v Qatar
  • hiree by Black Cube, see here  

And predictably on November 20, 2017 Deripaska filed a Notice of Appeal. On December 8 2017 the DC Court of Appeals dismissed Deripaska’s appeal. Link to the 1 page Order, here

 

 🇷🇺June 2017🇷🇺

This is where Canada and China make additional appearances in Deripaska’s FARA filing. I found item # 4 and item # 5 of interest. Why? Item 4 discloses contact with Government officials that do not qualify as “political activities” 👈🏻Which leads  reasonable person to conclude Deripaska had this firm engage in “lobbying” hence they would be required to register pursuant to the Lobbying Disclosure Act. Yet oddly I was unable to locate any registration in the House & Senate LDA Database. Conversely I found several records for Mr Deripaska but the last entry was in 2009, which lines up perfectly when Deripaska switched firms.See Pages 10-12 of Deripaska’s June 2017 FARA Supplemental Statement filing, found here. As referenced previously Deripaska sued the AP in May 2017, which would be reflective in this FARA reporting period but when you search 


In addition to the activities described in response Question 12, Endeavor Law Firm, PC ("Registrant") acted as counsel in Washington, D.C. for Mr. Oleg Deripaska ("Mr. Deripaska") on legal, regulatory, and philanthropic matters.

Specifically, Registrant:


1. Advise UC Rusal on legal matters;
2. Advised UC Rusal on matters related to the global bauxite and aluminum issues; the clean aluminum initiative; Chinese metal policy; Canadian energy policy; Legal arid regulatory issues in Guinea; UC Rusal's philanthropic and scientific approaches including development of the Ebola vaccine; US energy regulations; global climate policy.
3. Render legal advice to Mr. Deripaskaconcerning various matters.
4. Contact with government officials that do not qualify as "political activities" under FARA.
5. Consult with client concerning news reports about client's activities and response to said news reports.
6. Explored philanthropic partnerships for the Volnoe Delo Foundation relating to Guinea, global health and global development, and animal welfare.

 

 

 

 

 🇷🇺December 2017🇷🇺

 

What I found interesting is the reaffirmation of Deripaska’s commitment to China & Canada. The whole Ebola vaccine and “energy policies”. I could be wrong but the appearance of Russia v China v Canada v America adds a concerning geo-political demension given its abundantly clear that North Korea heavily relies on China and Russia.   

 

...addition to the activities described in response Question 12, Endeavor Law Firm, PC ("Registrant") acted as counsel in Washington, D.C. for Mr. Oleg Deripaska ("Mr. Deripaska") on political, legal and regulatory, media and philanthropic matters,

Specifically, Registrant:


1. Promoted UC Rusal's business interests;
2. Consulted with UC Rusal on matters related to the global bauxite and aluminum markets; clean aluminum initiative; Chinese metal policy; Canadian energy policy, mining operations in Guinea and Jamaica ;
Russian science including ebola vaccine; energy policies; global climate and environmental policies
3. Explored philanthropic partnerships for the Volnoe Delo Foundation relating to political developments in Jamaica and Guinea, animal welfare and U.S.-based foundations in areas of education, culture, domestic and global health and global development and served as legal counsel to Mr. Deripaska on a broad range of matters.

 

 

 

 And yes the US Sanctions against Deripaska & his Company are likely causing economic hardship. As evident in this early May 2017 Article:

 

 

 Further UC Rusal recently released their Annual Corp earnings report, I thought page 2 and paragraph 2 was exceptionally noteworthy. Link to Rusal’s 2017 Annual Report can be found, here

Full disclosure, I haven’t read the full 361 page report but I found the “messaging” from UC Rusal -interesting-

 

 

I am certain that it’s plausible Deripaska & Endeavor’s FARA filings are boilerplate, essentially a cut and paste document, but I do think it’s interesting that Deripaska didn’t use Endeavor when he filed his May 2017 lawsuit against the AP. With respect to “lobbying” as noted in several of Deripaska’s FARA filings, I ran a search in both the House & Senate LDA Databases. The last time Deripaska Registered was in 2009. See mini twitter thread below:

 

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