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Accused Iran-Sanctions Violator Retains Rudy

Trump confidant and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani has joined the legal team for a Turkish citizen accused of violating U.S. sanctions against Iran, The New York Times reports. Reza Zarrab, 33, is accused of operating fraudulent companies and tricking U.S. businesses into doing millions of dollars in deals with Iran, in violation of sanctions. Zarrab was previously detained in Turkey in 2013 as part of a corruption investigation into an associate of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who was then the country’s prime minister. Erdogan has criticized Zarrab’s incarceration in the U.S. Last month, Giuliani visited Erdogan in Turkey to discuss Zarrab’s case, the Times reports. Giuliani was reportedly accompanied by Michael B. Mukasey, another American lawyer on Zarrab’s legal team. Mukasey, a U.S. attorney general under George W. Bush, is a partner at the same law firm as Giuliani. Mukasey is also the father of Marc Mukasey, who is reported to be one of the Trump White House’s candidates to succeed former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who was overseeing Zarrab’s case. Giuliani’s high profile in the Trump administration could signal an attempt by the Zarrab team to gain influence with the White House. Neither Giuliani nor Mukasey will appear in court, the Times reported.