By Steve Neavling
The Russian lawyer who met with top Trump campaign aides at Trump Tower in 2016 was charged Tuesday in a money-laundering case that reveals her close ties to the Kremlin.
Federal prosecutors in New York charged Natalia V. Veselnitskaya with obstruction of justice in a U.S. money-laundering case involving Yury Chaika, a wealthy Russian businessman connected to the Trump Tower meeting, The New York Times  and Guardian report .
The June 2016 meeting was prompted by a representative close to the Kremlin who told Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., that Chaika could provide incriminating information about Hillary Clinton.
The meeting has become a focus of Robert Mueller’s special counsel investigation into possible collusion between Russia and Trump’s campaign in the lead-up to the 2016 presidential election. Attending the meeting were top campaign aides, Trump Jr., Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort, who has been convicted of crimes in unrelated cases.
Although the case against Veselnitskaya is unrelated to the Trump Tower meeting, the indictment reveals how closely she is connected to the Russian government.