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Senate Says Jailed Russian Spy Bonded With Overstock CEO Over Bitcoin Hoping to Get to Rand Paul

Senate Says Jailed Russian Spy Bonded With Overstock CEO Over Bitcoin Hoping to Get to Rand Paul

On Aug. 18, the Senate Intelligence Committee launched quantity 5 of its investigation into Russian interference within the 2016 election. The brand new model discovered that former CEO of Overstock.com and famous crypto advocate Patrick Byrne was a patsy to plans by Maria Butina, who’s presently serving time for espionage on behalf of Russia.

The romance between Butina and Byrne was the explanation the latter gave upon his departure from Overstock final yr. At all times an eccentric character, Byrne’s account of the connection mentioned that he was working with U.S. intelligence.

Per one e mail from Paul Erickson quoted within the report, Byrne was a lifelong bachelor who had change into fascinated with Butina and certainly needed her to have a toddler with him:

“Since assembly Maria, he has discovered ever extra artistic methods to pitch a standing $1 million supply to her ‘to have a child with him.’ He’s completely enamored of her imagined gene inventory and believes {that a} child would cement not solely his familial line but additionally relations between our two nations.”

The brand new report delves into already identified particulars about Byrne and Butina assembly at a libertarian convention, and clarifies that Bitcoin was the unifying issue:

“Butina didn’t convey her curiosity in Byrne at FreedomFest to the Committee, noting that ‘somebody was speaking about Bitcoin, and there have been some contemporary concepts that I needed to find,’ however not mentioning Byrne.”

Nevertheless, it appears Byrne was not a major goal. The report reads: “The Committee assesses that each Erickson and Butina seen Byrne, at the least initially, as a vector to one more Republican presidential candidate, Senator Rand Paul.”

The report additionally continues longstanding claims that Russian intelligence used cryptocurrency to fund phishing websites and VPNs as a part of its interference within the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

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