by WorldTribune Staff, September 19, 2018
The Russian entrepreneur who founded Webzilla is intent on finding out how he was included in the unverified Trump dossier, which accused him of directly participating in the hacking of Democratic Party computers, a report said.
Aleksej Gubarev was named in the dossier authored by ex-British spy Christopher Steele and funded by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party via Fusion GPS.
Val Gurvits, a Boston-based attorney, is assisting Gubarev on his mission.
“I have described him as the mouse that got caught between warring elephants,” Gurvits told Washington Times correspondent Rowan Scarborough in a Sept. 16 report.
Gubarev, who was labeled as an “oligarch close to Putin,” was shocked to see his name in the dossier, first published by BuzzFeed in January 2017. He quickly forced BuzzFeed to remove his name and issue an apology and went on to file libel lawsuits against BuzzFeed in Florida and against Steele in London.
Gubarev faces no U.S. sanctions and says he has no ties to President Donald Trump.
Gurvits has a theory that ties the dossier “to one of many Russia collusion theories that received wide press and social media attention, but proved bogus,” Scarborough wrote.
“The storyline: The Trump Organization maintained a computer server in its Fifth Avenue digs that linked directly to servers at Alfa Bank, one of Russia’s largest whose partners are tied to President Vladimir Putin. In other words: Donald Trump-Russia collusion.”
Gurvits told The Washington Times: “I’m investigating the possibility that there is a direct connection between Fusion GPS’s efforts to promote the Trump-Alfa Bank server story and Mr. Gubarev’s name appearing in Christopher Steele’s December memo.”
Scarborough noted that Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson “pushed the Alfa Bank-Trump conspiracy theory, according to leaked notes taken by former Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, whose wife worked at Fusion on its anti-Trump project. Ohr met with Simpson in December 2016 – the same month Steele wrote the Gubarev memo.”
Gurvits said he found it “extremely suspicious that mere weeks after Gubarev was quoted commenting on technical aspects of the alleged Trump-Alfa Bank server connection, his name appeared in the last memo of the dossier.”
The December dossier memo states that “–––– reported that over the period March-September 2016 a company called XBT/Webzilla and its affiliates had been using bots and porn traffic to transmit viruses, plant bugs, steal data and conduct ‘alternative operations’ against the Democratic Party leadership. Entities linked to one Alexei [sic] GUBAROV [sic] were involved and he and other hacking expert. Both recruited under duress by the FSB, [named omitted] were significant players in this operation.”
Christopher Steele “was working for Fusion GPS. If Fusion GPS was interested in propping up the Trump-Alfa Bank story, then how difficult would it be for them to have Christopher Steele discredit Gubarev by slandering him in the December memorandum?” Gurvits said.
Scarborough noted that “The only public evidence on how Steele received the Gubarev accusations is contained in his signed declaration in the London libel lawsuit, an ongoing secretive legal process that shows no signs of going to trial soon.”