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The FBI is investigating whether a Russian banker with ties to the country’s government pushed money into the National Rifle Association (NRA) to help President Donald Trump in the 2016 election, according to a new report.
The FBI is investigating Alexander Torshin, the deputy governor of Russia’s central bank, and whether he funneled money into the NRA to help them spend money during the election, McClatchyDC reports. It is illegal to use foreign money to help influence American elections.
The extent of evidence investigators have against Torshin or how long they have been looking into him were unclear, according to the news outlet.
The NRA reported spending $55 million during the 2016 election, including $30 million specifically in support of Trump–triple what it spent backing former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in 2012.
According to Open Secrets, politically active non-profits like the NRA are not required to disclose their donors.
The FBI’s investigation into Torshin comes amid the growing probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible ties between the country and the Trump campaign by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Trump has repeatedly called the Russia investigation a “hoax” and a “witch hunt,” including calling it the “greatest hoax ever perpetrated” last night.
You can read all of McClatchyDC’s report here.