That is probably where the meeting went south. The possibility of a bribe to the Clinton Global Initiative was tempting and tantalizing but the details of international tax law made the meeting boring. A campaign position on tougher international tax laws with countries America does not have an extradition treaty benefiting foreign governments over Wall Street investment capital wasn't going to win any votes in an election.
That's already been proven to be true with their Och-Ziff Investments and their Africa scandal.
From the Russian position, this dispute is as simple as Ziff's raiding a forest preserve for rocks. The Ziff's have a history of taking what they want and daring authorities to prosecute. It easy to surmise Dirk Ziff won't be traveling to Russia in the future.
Did the Ziff's donate to the Clinton Global Initiative to buy a favor from the State Department?
Who knows, but the Ziff's also have a history of buying favoritism from the Clinton's. How do you think made "Selling the Lincoln Bedroom" famous? Dirk Ziff at $411,000.
Now getting back to Clean Line Energy, how much money has been invested in CLEP? Over $250 million? Perhaps closer to $250 million. What do they have to show for their time as a venture capital project? Rock Island is dead, denied in Iowa and Illinois. Grain Belt Express has been denied three times in Missouri. In the last days of the previous administration Plains & Eastern Clean Line was approved by the Department of Energy, but P&ECL has no customers. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been invested by the Ziff Brothers, National Grid, and Bluescape Investments and Clean Line doesn't even have 1 mile of transmission built, no property owned, and not even a prototype.
I have to ask, is this a legitimate company or scam? It's been 7 years an hundreds of millions spent with nothing to show for it. With CLEP as a "partner" with the Department of Energy, is it time for the feds to audit Clean Line's books? Something weird is going on here. How does one spend hundreds of millions to develop projects that have been denied by state regulators, and continue to find investors who are willing to write checks? Does Michael Skelly ever intend to build a powerline or is this company simply some kind of "investment mechanism" that was never intended to be legitimate? I'm no expert in money laundering or fraud but something is weird here.
If a legitimate electricity company, like Commonwealth Edison, invested even half the money were talking here, say $100 million in failed projects, heads would roll. CEO's, vice presidents, project managers would be fired. Yet Clean Line continues to find new investment money? Something funny is going on here, and with Dirk Ziff in the center of it, I have to think there is some merit to the Russian's position in tax evasion.