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Ex-JPMorgan Banker Invited Erik Prince on Secret Venezuela Trip

  • Ian Hannam said to be scouting mining business there
  • U.S. officials have said the meetings may violate sanctions
Erik Prince
Erik PrincePhotographer: Justin Chin/Bloomberg

When Erik Prince, a major Trump donor and private security mogul, traveled to Caracas in November for secret talks with Venezuela’s vice president, he was not, it turns out, the central figure orchestrating the meetings.

That person was a controversial British deal-maker by the name of Ian Hannam, according to people familiar with the situation. Hannam, a former JPMorgan banker, arranged the trip as part of his yearlong scouting effort for possible gold investments in the crisis-battered nation, the people said. Prince’s meeting with Vice President Delcy Rodriguez has been reported; Hannam’s role hasn’t.