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Politics Robert Hyde: Giuliani associate discussed surveilling Marie Yovanovitch

04:40  15 january  2020
04:40  15 january  2020 Source:   cnn.com

'Never heard about': Pompeo says he wasn’t aware of possible surveillance of US ambassador to Ukraine

  'Never heard about': Pompeo says he wasn’t aware of possible surveillance of US ambassador to Ukraine Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he didn’t know about possible surveillance of former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch."I never heard about this at all. Until this story broke, I had, to the best of my recollection, had never heard of this at all," Pompeo told talk-show host Hugh Hewitt Friday.

A Parnas associate claimed to be surveilling Yovanovitch — and asked if he wanted “her out”. Finally, and most disturbingly, are a set of messages Parnas These messages certainly seem to suggest that Hyde was having Ambassador Yovanovitch surveilled — and that one ominous one

The Giuliani associate has been indicted on campaign finance charges. His lawyer says Parnas is providing a 'trove' of information to Intel committee. Impeachment witnesses also cited Giuliani as being behind information meant to tarnish former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch

A. Elizabeth Jones, Marie L. Yovanovitch that are talking to each other© CNN

A tranche of documents made public Tuesday as part of the House impeachment inquiry introduced a colorful new participant in the push last year by Rudy Giuliani and his associates to oust US ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, an effort that is at the center of congressional and prosecutorial investigations.

A series of texts disclosed by House Democrats show that Connecticut congressional candidate Robert F. Hyde, an ardent supporter of President Donald Trump who has donated thousands of dollars to Republican politics and the Trump campaign, communicated extensively with Giuliani associate Lev Parnas about Yovanovitch.

Robert Hyde Says He Was Only 'Playing' in Texts About Surveillance of Marie Yovanovitch

  Robert Hyde Says He Was Only 'Playing' in Texts About Surveillance of Marie Yovanovitch The Connecticut Republican told Sinclair TV's Eric Bolling that his texts to Lev Parnas were "just colorful" and stressed that he was a "little landscaper."The Connecticut Republican told Eric Bolling on Sinclair TV Wednesday night that messages he sent to Rudy Giuliani's indicted associate discussing surveillance of Yovanovitch were "just colorful," and said he was a "little landscaper from f------ Connecticut" when pressed on whether he had spied on the then-ambassador.

There are also, among other things, text messages between Parnas and Republican Robert Hyde about former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch , who Rudy Giuliani admitted to pushing out to pave the way for the Ukraine plot, with the charming line “Can’t believe Trumo [sic] hasn’t fired

Computer is off,” said Robert F. Hyde in a one text exchange to Parnas. “She’s next to the embassy. Um holy sh*t. This certainly makes it sound like Parnas and co. were actively tracking Yovanovitch 's movements. This could explain why Yovanovitch was moved out of Ukraine so quickly. https

Using coarse language, Hyde suggested to Parnas in messages throughout March 2019 that Yovanovitch should be removed from her post, and Hyde implied he or his allies were surveilling her.

"F**k that bitch," Hyde told Parnas on March 22, 2019, in response to a series of articles and tweets Parnas sent him. The following day, Hyde continued: "Wow. Can't believe Trump (sic) hasn't fired this bitch. I'll get right in that."

In a cryptic message, Hyde later wrote to Parnas: "They are willing to help if we/you would like a price." Hyde added: "Guess you can do anything in the Ukraine with money...what I was told."

Around the same time, Giuliani, Trump's personal attorney, had been engaged in a campaign to push out Yovanovitch, believing she was an impediment to Giuliani's effort to obtain what he thought would be damaging information on Trump's political rival, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

Pompeo says State will investigate possible surveillance of ex-US ambassador, after more than 48 hours of silence

  Pompeo says State will investigate possible surveillance of ex-US ambassador, after more than 48 hours of silence Secretary of State Mike Pompeo publicly committed to look into the possible surveillance of former US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch."We will do everything we need to do to evaluate whether there was something that took place there," Pompeo told conservative radio host Tony Katz.

Lev Parnas, the indicted associate of Rudy Giuliani , has told associates that he and his business partner, Igor Fruman, discussed Ukraine with Parnas told associates that he and Fruman informed Trump that then-US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch was unfavorable to the President

— Robert Hyde , to Rudy Giuliani , in newly released text messages referring to Marie Yovanovitch . Schiff also noted that according to the documents, on October 2, 2019, Trump attorney Jay Sekulow told former Trump attorney John Dowd that he had discussed “the issue of representation” with

Yovanovitch was recalled from her post on April 24, 2019.

Though Hyde didn't mention Yovanovitch by name, his texts to Parnas referred to her, according to House officials. Asked Tuesday evening if he had been offering to harm Yovanovitch, Hyde replied in a text message to CNN: "No effing way."

He added, appearing to reference House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff: "What kind of Bull Schiff question is that?"

Yovanovitch's attorney, Lawrence S. Robbins, said in a statement: "Needless to say, the notion that American citizens and others were monitoring Ambassador Yovanovitch's movements for unknown purposes is disturbing. We trust that the appropriate authorities will conduct an investigation to determine what happened."

Though Parnas and another Giuliani associate, Igor Fruman, have been in the public eye for months, particularly since their indictment in October on campaign-finance charges, Hyde hadn't been associated publicly with effort to remove Yovanovitch until Tuesday's disclosure of his messages.

Ukraine Investigates Reports of Illegal Surveillance of U.S. Ambassador

  Ukraine Investigates Reports of Illegal Surveillance of U.S. Ambassador The police in Ukraine have opened a criminal investigation into whether allies of President Trump had the United States ambassador to the country under surveillance while she was stationed in Kyiv, the Ukrainian government said on Thursday. Democrats in the House of Representative on Tuesday revealed evidence pointing to surveillance of the ambassador, Marie L. Yovanovitch, just before Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial in the Senate was scheduled to begin.

Mr. Giuliani had been critical of Ms. Yovanovitch , whom he and other Republicans have said was opposed to the president. She also butted heads with a Ukrainian prosecutor over the nature of his investigations. Ultimately, Mr. Trump recalled Ms. Yovanovitch from her post in late April.

2 Giuliani Associates Arrested On Campaign Finance Violations. Sessions did say, however, that after consulting with "several congressional colleagues," he wrote a letter to the secretary of state expressing concerns about Yovanovitch and her reported disparagement of Trump to others.

Hyde said he has not heard from prosecutors. A spokesman for the Manhattan US Attorney's office declined to comment.

Hyde has, however, attracted attention during his congressional bid, drawing controversy late last year for a crude tweet he posted, and later deleted, about former Democratic presidential candidate and California Sen. Kamala Harris.

According to his campaign website, Hyde is a military veteran and served in the Iraq war. He said he once ran a construction company and helped build the Connecticut home of rapper 50 Cent, whose real name is Curtis Jackson III. And he launched a lobbying shop in December 2018 called Finley Hyde & Associates, according to his LinkedIn page.

Hyde's social media accounts are littered with photographs of him with Parnas, Trump and his close allies. In a photo posted on the website of the Connecticut Post newspaper, Hyde posed for a selfie with Trump on Easter Sunday, April 21, 2019, the same day Trump first called Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky.

In Hyde's exchanges with Parnas, Hyde indicated he had knowledge of Yovanovitch's whereabouts and level of security.

FBI visits Robert Hyde's home and office after he's swept into Ukraine scheme

  FBI visits Robert Hyde's home and office after he's swept into Ukraine scheme Impeachment investigators released texts earlier this week suggesting Republican congressional candidate Robert Hyde was tracking the movements of the then-U.S. ambassador to Ukraine.The agent's visit comes days after the House Intelligence Committee released texts Hyde sent an associate of President Donald Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani suggesting he was surveilling then-U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch.

Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch was hostile to the president and his interests, the Post reports. Trump's July discussion with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky about investigating former Vice President Joe Biden and his son is what launched the House impeachment inquiry.

Hyde 's messages indicate Yovanovitch 's physical movements were being tracked in real time Hyde also did not immediately respond. The documents also included Parnas' handwritten notes on They also detailed plans involving Dmytro Firtash, a former business associate of Paul Manafort

"She under heavy protection outside Kiev," Hyde wrote on March 23, 2019, to which Parnas responded, "I know crazy s**t." Hyde replied, appearing to suggest that Yovanovitch was a member of the Russian security agency, "My guy thinks maybe FSB..?"

Two days later, Hyde sent Parnas a series of texts. "They are moving her tomorrow," he said. "The guys over they asked me what I would like to do and what is in it for them."

Hyde prodded Parnas: "Wake up Yankees man. She's talked to three people. Her phone is off. Computer is off. She's next to the embassy. Not in the embassy. Private security. Been there since Thursday."

After Parnas responded, saying "interesting," Hyde continued: "They know she's a political puppet. They will let me know when she's on the move." Parnas replied: "Perfect."

Hyde then made the quip to Parnas that "you can do anything in the Ukraine with money," to which Parnas replied: "Lol."

The following day, March 26, 2019, Hyde told him: "Update she will not be moved special security unit upgraded force on the compound people are already aware of the situation my contacts are asking what is the next step because they cannot keep going to check people will start to ask questions."

Hyde continued: "If you want her out they need to make contact with security forces. From Ukrainians." The following day, Hyde told Parnas: "Nothing has changed she is still not moving they check today again," and, "It's confirmed we have a person inside."

On March 29, Hyde told Parnas: "She had visitors." Hyde asked: "Hey broski tell me what we are doing what's the next step."

Parnas didn't appear to reply via text to that message. In the wake of the release of the texts, a lawyer for Parnas, Joseph A. Bondy, said: "We're very gratified that these materials have been conveyed to the Judiciary Committee. Lev remains committed to providing testimony to Congress to the extent necessary and appropriate."

In November, Yovanovitch said in her congressional testimony as part of the impeachment inquiry that when she was recalled, State Department officials told her they harbored concerns about her security.

This story has been updated with a statement from Yovanovitch's attorney.

Ukraine Probes Alleged Spying on U.S. Diplomat and Burisma Hack .
Ukrainian police opened criminal investigations into the alleged illegal surveillance of a former U.S. ambassador by people linked to President Donald Trump and a cyber-attack against a company mentioned in his impeachment proceedings. The probe into the possible monitoring of former Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch follows the release of records from U.S. House committees that suggest that Lev Parnas, an indicted associate of former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, was keeping tabs on the diplomat’s whereabouts when she was stationed in Ukraine.

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