I'm going to give you a bone. And bring your dog around, I'll give him a bone too. Groucho Marx
Ladies and gentlemen, meet Reza Zarrab. Who? Yeah, I know, I never hearda da guy either, but apparently Robert Mueller III has, which normally means that soon we will have too, right down to his cologne brand and shoe size.
Apparently, Reza Zarrab is not exactly a model citizen, not even for a foreign one. He was scheduled to go to trial in federal court in a matter of days, for allegedly cheating US sanctions in gold for gas deals with Iran has disappeared from the federal facility where he was being held. No, he didn't escape, the feds seem to know where he is, but nobody else does.
Apparently, Zarrab hasn't filed any court paperwork in over a month, for a trial that's supposed to start in days. Which is not making his co defendant very happy. According to reporting in The Daily Beast;
Last month, lawyers for his co-defendant, bank manager Mehmet Atilla, remarked sardonically in court filings that Zarrab, the man at the root of the charges facing their client, had all but vanished, and it seemed “likely that Mr. Atilla will be the only defendant appearing at trial.”
The Bureau of Prisons website shows that Zarrab was released from BOP custody on Nov. 8. He had been held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, a federal administrative prison near the Southern District of New York courthouse, before then.
Sounds kind of like a federal government game of "Where's Waldo?" Zarrab's lawyer confirmed that the miscreant in question will not be at the final pre trial hearing for his case.
Where is Reza Zarrab, and why is he there? The feds obviously think they have enough to convict Zarrab, or they wouldn't be taking him to trial. So why suddenly, on the verge of trial, take him on the lam and stash him somewhere?
Robert Mueller is not investigating gold-for-gas deals involving Iran. But he sure as hell is investigating a possible meeting or series of meetings where Michael Flynn was offered upwards of $15 million to facilitate the removal of Turkish cleric Fatullah Gulen, now a permanent US resident, by means fair and foul, as well as facilitating the release from federal custody of Zarrab's co-defendant.
Zarrab is looking at hard time. And the US Attorney's office doesn't make a habit of dragging people into court just to look like a bunch of boobs by having to release them after a not guilty verdict. Just ask Martin "Pharma Bro" Shkreli about that. Could Zarrab have dropped a dime to Robert Mueller, "You want Flynn? I can hand him to you wrapped in a pretty ink package, with a nice bow on top."
Why else would the feds sever him from his codefendant, and apparently delay his trial?
I have said it before. Mike Flynn is critical to the Trump-Russia investigation. A violation of the FARA Act don't mean jack shit to Trump, that's Flynn's problem. But if Mueller can prove that Flynn, a well connected surrogate, and eventually National Security Advisor, parked in the alley with Turkey for a little slap-and-tickle, it changes the basic perception of the whole case. If the Trump mob was willing to pay-for-play with Turkey, why should Russia be any different. If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, eh?
Like I said, remember the name Reza Zarrab. Because, if things work out right, in the not too distant future, you might not be able to forget it.