Trump confidant Tom Barrack faces trial for allegedly acting as foreign agent

Jury selection is set to begin Monday in the criminal trial of Thomas Barrack, a billionaire investor and close friend of former President Donald Trump, who is accused of

unlawfully lobbying the Trump administration on behalf of the United Arab Emirates. Federal prosecutors say Barrack, who served as a Trump campaign adviser and chair of

Trump's inaugural committee, tried to leverage his influence to advance the UAE's interests. Barrack has been out on $250 million bond since soon after his July 2021 arrest, when

he was charged with acting as an undisclosed foreign agent for the UAE, obstruction of justice and making false statements to the FBI about his dealings. Both Barrack and an

employee, Matthew Grimes, entered not guilty pleas to the charges. A third suspect, Rashid Al Malik, has not been located by law enforcement. Prosecutors said in Barrack's

indictment that he used his close friendship and insider access to try to sway Trump's foreign policy positions during the 2016 presidential campaign and in the early years of the

Trump administration. Speaking at the 2016 Republican National Convention, Barrack described Trump as "one of my closest friends for 40 years." After the 2016 election, he

was a frequent visitor to the Trump White House, often offering the president advice on Middle East affairs.