Schumer wants Justice Department to probe Richard Grenell over foreign lobbying

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer sent a letter to the Justice Department requesting an investigation into whether the acting director of national intelligence broke the law when he worked with foreign countries before joining the administration, according to a report on Wednesday.

The New York Democrat is seeking the probe into Richard Grenell‘s consulting for the Hungarian government and a Moldovan politician to determine if Grenell violated the Foreign Agents Registration Act by not disclosing his work to the Justice Department, CBS News reported.

FARA requires that people who lobby in the US for foreign entities disclose those relationships.

Grenell’s name doesn’t appear in the FARA filings, CBS reported.

“If the reports regarding the nature of Mr. Grenell’s undisclosed work with foreign entities are accurate, he may be subject to potential civil and criminal liability as well as vulnerable to blackmail in his new position in the Intelligence Community,” Schumer wrote in his letter to John Demers, the assistant attorney general for national security.

President Trump last week appointed Grenell, the US ambassador to Germany, to succeed Joseph Maguire as the acting director of national intelligence — a position that oversees 17 US intelligence agencies.

Grenell, who has no background in intelligence work, is expected to be on the job until Trump can appoint a permanent replacement for Maguire.

Schumer said if the investigation finds Grenell broke the law, he should face the appropriate punishment.

“Any illegal activity would obviously disqualify him from serving as the director of national intelligence or in any position of public trust,” he said.

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