APNewsBreak: US lifts secrecy on foreign lobbying opinions

June 08, 2018 - 5:00 am
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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department is opening up about the advice it has given to lobbyists who work for foreign governments and political interests.

For the first time, the public will be able to read advisory opinions provided to lobbyists about whether they need to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

The department had kept the opinions secret for decades, a point of contention for transparency advocates and lawyers who specialize in advising clients on complying with the law.

The Associated Press obtained copies of the opinions, which were to be posted online later Friday.

The move comes as the Justice Department carries out an enforcement strategy against unregistered foreign agents. It also comes as special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation shines a spotlight on foreign influence peddling.

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