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Do we really have to write two posts in a row that feature Oleg Deripaska, whose face is really weird looking and stupid and we hate looking at it? Yes. Apparently we do.

OK, so we were just talking about how Deripaska is getting a sweet free handjob from Steven Mnuchin's Treasury Department with the deal to lift sanctions off his companies. We also know that Deripaska is Paul Manafort's former boss, to whom Manafort was in serious debt, and to whom Manafort weirdly offered secret briefings on the Trump camapign, as a way to "get whole." (We still don't know what exactly that means, or how involved Deripaska was in the Russian conspiracy to ratfuck the election and install Trump in office, but we bet Robert Mueller does.)

But another wang of the Deripaska story we've learned over the past couple of years involves a woman named Anastasia Vashukevich, AKA Nastya Rybka, an escort who traveled with Deripaska on his yacht, and who once claimed to have recordings of Deripaska on his yacht discussing the plan to skullfuck America's democratic presidential election, presumably because Russians never really have understood how democracy is supposed to work, and also because they wanted to steal the American presidency to use it for their own benefit.

Don't know if you've been following the latest news -- that Rybka was suddenly released from the Thai prison where she had been bizarrely detained, that she was assured she would be able to safely go home to Belarus, and that she was immediately arrested while changing planes in Russia -- but she's free now. Or, you know, "free."


The backstory!

Back in August 2016, Oleg Deripaska was fartin' around on his yacht off the shores of Norway -- at the same time Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev may have been ALLEGEDLY fartin' around on his own yacht off the coast of Croatia with "Trump people" -- and Rybka/Vashukevich, a self-styled sex-pert, was there, along with Russian deputy prime minister Sergei Prikhodko. When Rybka was later arrested in Thailand, she started Instagramming and begging the United States for help, saying she had hours upon hours of audio/video recordings of Deripaska and Prikhodko on that yacht, talking about, among other things, the US plan to fuck the election for Trump. After her arrest in Thailand, Rybka said this in an Instagram video:

"I am the only witness and the missing link in the connection between Russia and the U.S. elections — the long chain of Oleg Deripaska, Prikhodko, Manafort, and Trump," Vashukevich said in a live Instagram video Tuesday, apparently shot as she was driven in an open-air police van through the Thai resort city of Pattaya. "In exchange for help from U.S. intelligence services and a guarantee of my safety, I am prepared to provide the necessary information to America or to Europe or to the country which can buy me out of Thai prison."

Rybka didn't want to be deported back to Belarus or to Russia, because she was worried she would die in prison, or die in some other location, like walking down the street or falling down the stairs or taking a shower or doing yoga or shopping at the Russian version of Big Lots. You know how Russians are, always dying of natural causes in the most curious of ways!

When Russian dissident Alexei Navalny caught wind of all this last year, he started publicizing it, just before the Russian presidential "election" (DO NOT CONGRATULATE), which led Oleg Deripaska to queen out and sue everybody, and led the Kremlin to have a weapons grade shit-fit and threaten to ban YouTube and Instagram from the whole entire country.

Rybka was eventually interviewed by the New York Times, where she dropped more details about what was on her alleged tapes:

"They were discussing elections," she said. "Deripaska had a plan about elections."

But, she added, "I can't tell you everything."

Some of the conversations were with three people who spoke English fluently and who she thought were Americans, she said.

"It is not only about me," she said. "It concerns a lot of people in America and other countries."

WHO ELSE WAS ON THAT YACHT? You know, "allegedly."

Let's remember what happened just before that August 2016 trip. First of all, Paul Manafort was running the Trump campaign for free, after years working for pro-Russian Ukrainian interests and also for Oleg Deripaska, to whom he was in serious debt. We discussed the weeks just prior in our massive "let's throw shit at the wall" Carrie Mathison "Homeland"-style post on where we think Robert Mueller's investigation is headed:

Weirdly, Paul Manafort had just had a meeting with his Russian spy/business partner/co-defendant Konstantin Kilimnik back in New York, after exchanging emails all summer where Paul Manafort was offering Deripaska "briefings" on the Trump campaign, and expressing a desire to get "whole" with Deripaska. Days later, there's Fuckin' Oleg off the coast of Norway maybe talkin' shit about stealing an American election while an escort's tape recorder was running.

According to emails between Kilimnik The Russian Spy and Manafort, Deripaska had secret messages for him to deliver at the meeting in New York.

Anyway, we can't imagine what Rybka could hypothetically have on tape, but we bet it's juicy as fuck, hypothetically. (See, Rudy Giuliani? Wonkette can talk Very Smart Lawyer too!)

Back to the present!

Rachel Maddow had a fabulous report last night on the whole Oleg Deripaska sanctions deal, and the latest on Nastya Rybka:

Model With 2016 Secret Fights To Escape Russia, Oleg Deripaska's Reach | Rachel Maddow | MSNBC www.youtube.com

For a long time, we weren't sure if Nastya Rybka was still alive. And hell, now that she's free, we're still worried that, as we've said before and as has mysteriously happened to so many people who get sideways with the Russian government, she may not remain alive. But for right now, she is.

Thailand suddenly released Rybka last week. Again, she was told she'd be kept safe and sound as she flew through Moscow and on to Belarus. She was instead arrested, on what appear to be trumped up sex trafficking charges.

Maddow showed footage of Rybka in a Russian courtroom, in that creepy subhuman glass cage Russians put defendants in, pleading her case, promising that she won't be saying bad things about Oleg Deripaska anymore, no sir, your honor. She has learned her lesson, and you don't have to worry about her doing anything that might expose the crimes of Deripaska or the Russian government, so please let her go, extremely fair and not corrupt Russian judge!

But we guess it's cool now, because she's free. Or "free," as it were. Does she get to go back to Belarus now, which is probably just teeming with Putin's assassins at this very moment? Unclear.

So anyway, back to that trashbag Oleg Deripaska!

The dissident Alexei Navalny has more news for us! It's no big deal, it's just that he says he's aware of recordings of Oleg Deripaska and some of his pals scheming about doing LOCK HER UPS to Nastya Rybka.

There are three different audio recordings: one about the seizure of a water bottling plant, and two about Anastasia Vashukevich ("Nastya Rybka"), including one call that includes people named "Tatiana," "Georgy," and "William" talking about Vashukevich's arrest in Thailand. In the recording, Georgy insists that everyone in Vashukevich's group needs to be "locked up," while William points out that Thai law doesn't imprison "sex trainers." Georgy then says Vashukevich's group could be charged with illegal business activities, instead.

In February 2018, when Vashukevich, her associate Alexander Kirillov (who goes by the name "Alex Leslie"), and eight participants in their "sex training" group were arrested in Thailand, they were initially charged with illegal business activity. The 10 suspects were acquitted in April, but subsequently charged with conducting illegal sex work. After pleading guilty, everyone in the group was sentenced to probation and deported.

Alexey Navalny believes that the "Tatiana" in the audio recording is Tatiana Monegen, the secretary general of the Russian branch of International Chamber of Commerce (which has close ties to Oleg Deripaska). Navalny says "Georgy" is likely Georgy Oganov, the former spokesman for Russia's U.S. embassy, a board member at Deripaska's "Basic Element" industrial group, and one of Deripaska's advisers.

Totally normal.

In summary and in conclusion!

We wish we felt confident that this was a fucked up story with a happy ending, but we're not.

But while we're on the subject of recordings, let's quickly revisit the question of who the fuck the Americans on Oleg Deripaska's yacht were, if there were, in fact, Americans on Oleg Deripaska's yacht that week in August 2016. If Deripaska was being a bad guy, and he was conspiring with Americans perhaps as part of a massive Russian campaign to steal the American presidency and give it to Vladimir Putin, why on earth would he let Nastya Rybka video the whole thing?

Oh, maybe that was the point.

But then Rybka started acting out and LORDY, OLEG GOTTA DO SOMETHIN' 'BOUT THOSE TAPES.

You know, allegedly.

These motherfucking Russians.

[Washington Post / New York Times / Meduza.io]

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Evan Hurst

Evan Hurst is the senior editor of Wonkette, which means he is the boss of you, unless you are Rebecca, who is boss of him. His dog Lula is judging you right now.

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