Kleptocracy Daily: May 16, 2017

News

Investigators looking into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia will be able to pursue leads by tapping into a huge database of suspicious financial transactions maintained by FinCEN.

President Trump revealed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador in a White House meeting last week, according to current and former U.S. officials, who said Trump’s disclosures jeopardized a critical source of intelligence on the Islamic State. Trump confirmed this allegation this morning via Twitter.

Kremlin-connected billionaire Oleg Deripaska sued the Associated Press for defamation and libel over a report on his business ties to President Trump’s former campaign chairman.

In sweeping sanctions, Ukraine will block several top Russian websites, including VKontakte and Odnoklassniki, social networks with broad popularity across the former Soviet Union.

Features

U.S. regulators are clamping down on trade-based money laundering, but they should look further than banks to combat the practice.

In an investigation of PrivatBank, Ukraine’s largest bank, recently owned by oligarchs Ihor Kolomoiskiy and Gennadiy Bogolyubov, RFE/RL’s anti-corruption programSchemes found that just prior to being nationalized in December 2016, the bank made loans amounting to approximately $4.16 billion to companies that exist only on paper. (in Ukrainian)

The city of Moscow has its own propaganda empire.