Everything you were afraid to ask about this suddenly important person. Here's the deep dirt on the Russian businessman who promised "Our boy can become president of the USA"
LEGAL FAKE NAME: Felix Henry Sater (born Felix Mikhailovich Sheferovsky)
OTHER NAMES USED: Felix Satter, Felix Slater, Felix Sader, Haim F. Sater, Hai Ying Sater, Sater Felix, Felix T. Catter, Felix W. Unger, Cole Lusion
OCCUPATION: Real Estate Developer, Global Snitch, Mueller Probee
EDUCATION: Pace University (1987, BA in racketeering)
WHY WE CARE: Sater was the intermediary who brought Trump lawyer Michael Cohen and representatives of Vladimir Putin a plan in late 2015 to discuss building a Trump Tower in Moscow in exchange for sanctions against Russia eventually being lifted if Trump won the election. The Moscow tower plan fell through and was replaced by a more modest project: annexing six acres along the Ukranian border for a bank of video poker machines.
Shortly after Trump’s inauguration, Sater orchestrated another meeting about lifting sanctions. Last February, responding to one proposal, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov rejected Russia leasing Crimea from the Ukraine by claiming, “We cannot rent from ourselves.” Forty-eight hours later, Roy Cohn faxed Lavrov from Hell: “What do you mean ‘we?’”
DON’T GO AGAINST THE FAMILY: Sater moved to the United States from Russia when he was eight. (That’s right, ladies, he’s dreamy, and a dreamer!) According to the FBI, Sater’s father Mikhail Sheferovsky was a Russian Mafia underboss, also known as the Cosa Borschtra. Sheferovsky was convicted of extorting money from local restaurants, grocery stores and medical clinics. Whoa. Whoa Whoa. He didn’t extort money from local liquor stores? And this guy calls himself a businessman?
In 1998, Sater pleaded guilty to involvement in a $40 million stock fraud scheme orchestrated by the Russian Mafia. In exchange for his plea, he agreed to become an informant for the FBI. Unfortunately, because the Bureau did not give him the Whitey Bulger Preferred Rat Status, he was not allowed to kill anybody. Maybe “not allowed” is too strong a term. Let’s say it was frowned upon.
Sater served no jail time, and in 2009, he paid a $25,000 fine, for which the FBI was compensated in 2500 counterfeit Taylor Swift tickets.
NOT PASSING THE BAR: In 1991, Sater was convicted of first degree assault after he got into an argument with a commodities broker at the El Rio Grande restaurant in Manhattan. He stabbed the man with a margarita glass, causing wounds that would require 110 stitches. He served 15 months in prison, paroled early after he agreed to pay the victim’s medical expenses. Unfortunately, Sater’s insurance carrier, Nyetna, had a 112-stitch deductible.