GOP Fundraiser Alleges Qatari Agents Hacked His Computer

(CN) – A high-profile Republican fundraiser and ally to President Trump filed a lawsuit in the Central District Court in Los Angeles on Monday alleging agents of the Qatari government used “electronic warfare” in a campaign to discredit him and disrupt defense contracting deals.

Elliott Broidy, who was the chair of Trump’s fundraising committee, is suing the Qatari government, Stonington Strategies, a firm with ties to the Gulf state and Nicolas Muzin, a prominent attorney registered as a foreign agent of Qatar.

Broidy said these “agents” directed a “hostile intelligence operation” with the goal of discrediting him for his critique of Qatar’s alleged support of regional terrorist operations and his support of counterterrorism efforts by rival nations of the oil-rich nation.

The lawsuit alleges Qatar directed hackers to illegally access Broidy’s credentials. Hackers then used his credentials to breach his personal computer, pilfering emails and other documents for the purpose of discrediting him in the “eyes of government officials.”

Information obtained from Broidy’s personal computers showed he told clients, in some cases unsavory and prominent political figures under investigation for corruption, he could facilitate meetings with Trump and other political leaders, according to documents leaked to the domestic and foreign press outlets earlier today.

Broidy said some of the “unlawfully stolen” documents leaked to the media outlets were “doctored or wholly forged.”

In the complaint, Broidy said he was targeted for the vocal “criticism of the State of Qatar’s support of terrorism” he shared with private citizens and U.S government officials.

Broidy said Qatar has, in recent years, worked to change its image as a financial and logistical supporter of terrorist organizations through “multi-million dollar public relationships” campaigns. He said Qatar has specifically targeted the Jewish community in the U.S, which he calls himself a prominent member of.

Broidy has been a supporter of the State of Israel for 25 years through monetary donations, he said.

In the suit, Broidy said he has defense business dealings with the United Arab Emirates worth $200 million. The defense program is meant to assist the UAE in “developing its defense and counterterrorism capabilities,” he said.

He is in preliminary discussions with Saudi Arabia to provide similar capabilities, according to the lawsuit.

Last year, both the UAE and Saudi Arabia severed diplomatic ties with Qatar over its alleged support of terrorism and connections to Iran.

Broidy said Muzin, a Syrian attorney based in Maryland, has “conspired” with Qatar and other foreign agents on a “strategic campaign to retaliate against and discredit” him.

Earlier this year, Muzin recruited former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, a former Republican candidate for President, and father of current White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, for a diplomatic tour in Qatar.

A review of a Department of Justice database listing registered foreign agents showed Muzin signed DOJ registration documents in August 2017 on behalf of Stonington, a firm registered as a foreign agent of the State of Qatar.

In June 2017, Qatari officials complained about remarks made by Trump at a meeting of the Republican National Committee.

“We’re having a dispute with Qatar,” Trump said. “I prefer that they don’t fund terrorism.”

Broidy, a prominent investor and defense contractor, jointly filed the complaint with his wife Robin Rosenzweig. According the complaint, they believe the hacks took place in the first half of 2017 and early 2018. The pair are seeking damages to be determined by a court.

Broidy is the CEO and chairman at Broidy Capital Management, a firm he founded in 1991. He served on the Homeland Security Advisory Council from 2006 to 2009, specifically on the Future of Terrorism Task Force.

 

 

 

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