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Former Trump Fund-Raiser Drops Suits Over Hack of Emails

U.S.Former Trump Fund-Raiser Drops Suits Over Hack of Emails

Elliott Broidy, a California businessman who was once a top fund-raiser for Donald J. Trump, dropped two lawsuits on Monday against people he accused of helping to carry out a hack-and-leak operation that revealed his covert lobbying to shape the Trump administration’s foreign policy.

Mr. Broidy pleaded guilty in 2020 to conspiring to violate foreign lobbying laws on behalf of Chinese and Malaysian interests. Mr. Trump pardoned him in January 2021, just hours before leaving office.

The hack and dissemination of Mr. Broidy’s records in 2018, and the lawsuits that followed, came amid a bitter feud between Qatar and two of its regional rivals — the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia — from whom Mr. Broidy was seeking lucrative defense contracts. From the beginning of the Trump administration, Mr. Broidy lobbied Mr. Trump and his aides to take a harder line against Qatar.

In the lawsuits, Mr. Broidy claimed that the Qatari government engineered the hack in an effort to neutralize his criticism of the country for financing groups linked to terrorism.

The New York Times published articles about Mr. Broidy’s activities based on material provided by an anonymous group critical of his advocacy of American foreign policies in the Middle East. Who is responsible for the hacking operation remains unclear.

One of the lawsuits was against Kevin Chalker, a former C.I.A. officer who owns a New York-based technology security firm. Mr. Broidy had alleged that Mr. Chalker and his firm, Global Risk Advisors, orchestrated the email hack on behalf of the Qataris.

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