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In listening to some additional analysis of the court documents by people who actually know a bit of what they're talking about, it's clear I don't. At least not completely.

It looks like the attorneys (I still think there are two) might be the ones engaged in unregistered lobbying on behalf of the suspect. That lobbying would be with some senior official in the White House and could be interpreted as a bribery for pardon scheme. The bribe is clearly the future political donations.

The asserted attorney-client privilege is being breached because this would be an illegal conspiracy to commit a crime, which is not subject to the usual privilege. The 4th party whose name is redacted may be that White House official.

What we don't know is the underlying potential crime that led investigators to look into all of this in the first place. The suspect wants to be pardoned for some unnamed additional crime.

So the suspect list would be large political donors who are under investigation for - or perhaps already convicted of - a crime. The suspect would have to be aware of this potential crime, otherwise they would have no reason to be seeking a pardon. They may or may not be aware of this bribe for pardon investigation - at least not before today. I'm pretty sure that the suspect and lawyers involved are now aware of it, even if they weren't before today. And that may be why the government investigators wanted to keep the August court decision sealed.

--Peter
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