The appointment raises questions about Perry’s role in Ukrainian energy politics, and whether the former Texas governor pressured the government there to buy American energy supplies to win sides with the Trump administration. As Poritico reported, Perry originally pushed Benth and another Perry affiliate, a Texas oil and gas executive, to accept Ukraine, along with Michael Belizer, on its board.
more recently, Time.com and WNYC-ProPubliica reported Thursday that federal prosecutors investigated Perry’s efforts to deliver natural gas to Louisiana Natural Gas to a broker on a $ 20 billion contract for a company called Louisiana Natural Gas Exports. The report stated that Bains had promoted the company as one that the Ukrainian government could work to deliver natural gas to the country.
Louisiana Natural Gas Exports had no assets or produce of its own At the time it was seeking a contract, gas and instead sought to obtain gas from a Houston-based company Called Energy Transfer Partners. Perry served on the Energy Transfer Board before joining the Trump administration and returned to that role shortly after stepping down last year.
One person With direct knowledge To confirm the investigation, Politico said federal prosecutors in New York had Perry pushed what he saw last winter Government of Ukraine to sign contract with Louisiana Natural Gas Export. Time.com reported that the U.S. The investigation has since dropped since the Southern District of New York. The prosecutors’ office did not immediately respond to POLITICO’s request for comment.
The Ukrainian government wanted to replace Honstein with Bensch last year as “a deliverable for Perry and Trump”, the person added, but came back amid political upheavals after Politico, who reported that the Trump administration Military aid was withheld to force Ukraine. The government there To announce the investigation of Biden’s son Hunter. That White House pressure prompted Democrats to impeach Trump.
Time.com said that the Ukrainian government signed a $ 20 billion contract with Louisiana Natural Gas Exports due to concerns about its management. According to the news site’s report, after Perry stepped down and US presidential election voting did not clarify whether Trump would win a second term.
A spokesman for the Department of Energy and energy transfer partners did not immediately return a request for comment. Bensch declined to comment on the record.
A spokesman for Perry criticized the report as “a sustained effort to create a story that does not exist. This is another failed attempt to rewrite history, this time two months before the presidential election. This ridiculous story Time should be ashamed to publish. “
Louisiana Natural Gas Exports also sent a letter to the Turkish-US Business Council in Istanbul in June 2020 to present itself as a potential supplier. liquefied natural gas For that country, according to a filing under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.
“We welcome this opportunity under the leadership of and working with President Erdogan [the council]LNGE chief executive Ben Blanchett wrote that Turkey’s strategic energy supply is part of the increase through an increase in imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the United States.
Louisiana Natural Gas Exports did not immediately respond to phone calls seeking comment.