Rapper Indicted for Funneling Millions in Foreign Money into Obama Presidential Campaign


Former Fugees rapper Pras Michel pleaded not guilty to four federal charges of conspiracy and falsifying records stemming from the rapper’s alleged role in campaign finance violations to benefit Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign.

The DOJ accused Michel of funneling $21 million in foreign money into pro-Obama super PACs without disclosing the origins, which was reportedly tied to Malaysian businessman, Jho Low.

Jho Low was indicted last year on conspiracy charges related to a scam bilking 1MBD of hundreds of millions of dollars, but will face additional charges along with Pras Michel – Low, however remains at large.

The Justice Department announced Pras Michel was hit with a four-count indictment including conspiracy to defraud the US and making foreign campaign contributions was unsealed Friday in the District of Columbia.

Via the DOJ:

According to the indictment, between June 2012 and November 2012, Low directed the transfer of approximately $21,600,000 from foreign entities and accounts to Michel for the purpose of funneling significant sums of money into the United States presidential election as purportedly legitimate contributions, all while concealing the true source of the money.  To facilitate the excessive contributions and conceal their true source, Michel paid approximately $865,000 of the money received from Low to about 20 straw donors, or conduits, so that the straw donors could make donations in their names to a presidential joint fundraising committee.  In addition, Michel personally directed more than $1 million of the money received from Low to an independent expenditure committee also involved in the presidential election in 2012.

The indictment also alleges that by funneling campaign contributions through straw donors, Michel caused a presidential joint fundraising committee to submit false reports to the Federal Election Commission (FEC), including a false amended report in June 2013.  The committee’s reports were false because they identified the straw donors, rather than Low or Michel, as the true source of the contributions.  In addition, the indictment alleges that by contributing more than $1 million of the money he received from Low to an independent expenditure committee, Michel also caused that committee to submit false reports to the FEC, insofar as those reports identified Michel as the source of the contributions when, in fact, it was Low.  The indictment further alleges that in June 2015, Michel submitted a false declaration to the FEC in which he claimed that he had no reason to conceal the true source of his contributions to the independent expenditure committee in 2012, even though Michel knew that the true source of that money was Low and that Michel had funneled the foreign money into the election.

To what degree did Asia fund Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign?

Under federal election law, contributions from foreign sources are prohibited. But the law also doesn’t require a campaign to disclose the source of contributions less than $200, and it doesn’t even have to keep records for those giving less than $50.

In September, for instance, Obama’s campaign announced it had raised $181 million. But if you’re looking for transparency, you won’t find it: Just 2% of that amount — $3.6 million — has to be reported to the FEC.

Of special concern are funds flowing into the Obama campaign from foreign sources, especially China.

In 2008, Robert Roche, a U.S. businessman based in Shanghai with extensive commercial ties to the Chinese government, bought the website Obama.com.

Roche, a big-time bundler for Obama, was given a place of honor at the head table with Obama and first lady Michelle Obama at a 2011 state dinner for Chinese President Hu Jintao. Nothing illegal about that.

It’s not clear Roche still even owns Obama.com. But this year, suspiciously, the site began sending visitors to the Obama campaign’s donation page on the Web. Some 68% of Obama.com’s visitors are foreign.

Similarly, the Obama re-election campaign itself seems to be encouraging illegal foreign contributions.

Its social media website, my.barackobama.com, gets about 20% of its visitors from foreign locations. Anyone who uses the website, says the GAI, “immediately begins receiving solicitations for donations.”

However, “At no point … is a visitor asked whether he or she can legally donate to a U.S. election,” it notes.

The revelation is troubling, since China’s government has a history of trying to manipulate U.S. politicians, especially — but not exclusively — Democrats.

In 1996, Chinese agent Johnny Chung gave almost $100,000 to American politicians, much of it from powerful members of China’s military. Chung reportedly gave $300,000 to President Clinton’s campaign.

The Justice Department in 1997 launched two investigations of reported attempts of high-level Chinese officials to “buy influence” with U.S. politicians, especially the Democratic National Committee.

With the Internet, China seems to have found a road to political clout bigger than an eight-lane highway.

Sources: The Gateway Pundit, Investors



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