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CNN: Rama gave McGonigal an oil drilling license, in return he launched an investigation into a lobbying case
Yesterday evening, former FBI official Charles McGonigal admitted that he had received $225,000 from Albanian-American Agron Nezaj, who, according to court documents, became an informant for the FBI's investigation into his contacts and meetings. in Albania.
McGonigal pleaded guilty to all charges related to Albania, including contacts with the Prime Minister of Albania, Edi Rama, and the Prime Minister's unofficial adviser, Dorian Ducka.
CNN points out that while McGonigal was in the FBI, he met with Prime Minister Edi Rama and received from him a license to drill in oil fields.
McGonigal, who pleaded guilty to one count of concealing material facts in Washington, told a federal judge during his plea hearing that the individual was his friend and that they were planning to start a consulting firm together when McGonigal to retire from the FBI.
The money, McGonigal said, was part of a loan for that business — although in the statement of facts related to the plea agreement, McGonigal agreed there were no conditions on the loan and that he never paid it back.
During McGonigal's time at the FBI, the two traveled to Albania several times and met with the country's prime minister. McGonigal asked the Prime Minister for a license to drill in the oil fields on behalf of the former intelligence officer, who had financial interests in this direction.
The overseas meetings, which he did not disclose to the FBI, were to develop potential business relationships, McGonigal said. He also told the court he knew engaging in personal business was not allowed while working for the FBI and apologized to the bureau and his wife.
According to the statement of facts, the FBI also opened an investigation into a US citizen who was lobbying for a political party in Albania, "based in part on information provided by the defendant McGonigal and his direction."
In the investigation, McGonigal's potential business partner acted as a confidential human source for the investigation, and an Albanian foreign contact who had met McGonigal helped facilitate meetings with witnesses in Europe and the FBI, including paying for travel expenses. of witnesses.
McGonigal will be sentenced in the Washington case in February. He faces a maximum of five years, although he could be sentenced to much less.