A U.S. Magistrate Judge in the Eastern District of Virginia on Friday ordered 60-year-old George Nader to be detained ahead of trial. The defense hoped that Nader would be granted conditional release due to complications from a heart surgery, but the judge said Nader is a danger to the community.
He has been “remanded to the custody of the [U.S. Marshals Service] due to safety of the community,” the docketed order from Magistrate Judge Ivan Davis said. The judge scheduled a preliminary hearing for Monday.
Davis reportedly had a “litany” of concerns about releasing Nader from custody, including that Nader is a potential flight risk and worth roughly $3 million.
Magistrate Judge Ivan Davis provided a litany of concerns he had about the potential for Nader, 60, to flee. He has a villa in the UAE, a chalet in Lebanon, his net worth is around $3 million and he has at least $1 million in cyber currency alone.
— Brandi Buchman (@BBuchman_CNS) June 7, 2019
Prosecutors called into question Nader’s health concerns in noticeable fashion. The reported quote: “When the government brought Mr. Nader to a doctor for evaluation on Monday, the doctor said: don’t bring healthy people in here.”
Nader was arrested in New York City on Monday for allegedly “transporting visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.” The charges stem from evidence the FBI found when agents seized three of Nader’s iPhones on an unrelated matter in January 2018, according to court documents. The FBI allegedly found dozens of pornographic videos of boys on one of Nader’s phones, as well as images depicting bestiality. Nader previously pleaded guilty to one count of transporting child pornography in 1991.
Nader was a cooperating witness in Special Counsel Robert Mueller‘s investigation into whether then-candidate Donald Trump‘s campaign coordinated with Russian effort to interfere in the 2016 election. Nader helped organized a controversial meeting in the Seychelles during which Erik Prince (Betsy DeVos‘s brother) and others–including Kirill Dmitriev, chief executive of the Russian Direct Investment Fund–met with the United Arab Emirates Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed. Mueller’s report said this about the meeting:
Nader informed Prince that the Russians were looking to build a link with the incoming Trump Administration…he told Prince that Dmitriev had been pushing Nader to introduce him to someone from the incoming Administration… Nader suggested, in light of Prince’s relationship with Transition Team officials, that Prince and Dmitriev meet to discuss issues of mutual concern.
Dmitriev hesitated to meet with Prince, but Nader reassured him:
This guy [Prince] is designated by Steve [Bannon] to meet you! I know him and he is very well connected and trusted by the New Team. His sister is now a Minister of Education.
[Screengrab via CSPAN]
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]