After Fraud Exposed, Atlantic Council Cut Ties With Gaurav & Sharon Srivastava Family Foundation 

‘We made the decision to terminate our relationship with Srivastava upon learning new information because of our donor review process.’

After Fraud Exposed, Atlantic Council Cut Ties With Gaurav & Sharon Srivastava Family Foundation 

The Atlantic Council has confirmed it has terminated its relationship with a major donor, Gaurav Srivastava, after the Indian-American businessman was exposed as involved in several fraudulent activities. 

The leading American think tank said it decided to terminate its relationship with Gaurav Srivastava, his wife Sharon, and their fake charitable organization, The Gaurav & Sharon Srivastava Family Foundation, after the think tank couldn’t confirm important details of their background in its donor vetting process. Srivastava and his wife, Sharon, donated at least $1 million to the think tank for its Global Food Security Forum in Bali in November 2022.

“All funds received by the Atlantic Council from Srivastava for the Global Food Security Forum were dedicated to and used for the event,” a spokesperson for the Atlantic Council said. “We did, however, return funding received from Srivastava in 2023 for future collaboration.”

“We made the decision to terminate our relationship with Srivastava upon learning new information because of our donor review process. For example, we learned that The Gaurav & Sharon Srivastava Family Foundation was not an established 501(c)(3) [non-profit organization] in April of 2023, despite Srivastava’s representation to the Council that this was a registered foundation,” the spokesperson said.

In an attempt to distance Srivastava from these allegations of misrepresentation, the businessman’s lawyer claimed the termination was “related to a gift in respect of a subsequent project, as to which the parties disagreed on the manner of its implementation, whereupon $500,000 given in advance was returned.” 

The Atlantic Council was facing questions and mounting criticism after the discovery that one of its major donors, Gaurav Kumar Srivastava, was involved in large-scale scams, some of which included using the name of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to make money fraudulently.

Gaurav Srivastava, an Indian businessman living in America, is accused of orchestrating international scams in which he claimed to be an undercover CIA operative to defraud international businessmen.

The Atlantic Council hosted its 2022 Global Food Security Forum in Bali, sponsored with more than $1 million by the Gaurav & Sharon Srivastava Foundation, an alleged non-profit NGO run by Srivastava with his wife Sharon Srivastava (née Johnson), where Srivastava paid a panel of experts to discuss global food security.

The think tank had come under pressure after respected journalists Bradley Hope and Soobin Kim found that Srivastava pretended to be a CIA spy in order to fraudulently take over the assets of a Dutch trader after assuring him of help using his alleged “CIA” links. He told the trader that he was a “non-official cover” or NOC (pronounced “knock”) for the CIA and operated at the senior level amongst a total of 30 NOCs around the world. Srivastava put forth a dubious proposition: if the trader could make Srivastava a partner in the business by moving 50% of the shares of his company to a Delaware-incorporated company controlled by Srivastava and domicile the structure in the US, the trader would quietly be excused from future sanctions on Russia because he would be given a special license to continue trading in accordance with the US Treasury’s desire to keep oil flowing.

While the foundation is said to have been established in 2015, a company named The Gaurav & Sharon Srivastava Family Foundation was registered in the secretive state of Delaware (USA) on October 12, 2022. However, foundations are typically not registered as corporations, and the earliest archives on the foundation’s website only date back to November 2022.

These factors raised doubts about its establishment date and credibility. We have also identified the foundation that applied for its trademark on February 23, 2023, assisted by US attorney Jonathan Berger. The trademark application affirmed that the legal entity type of the Foundation is a ‘Corporation'—not a charitable organization.

The Foundation is not registered with the US federal tax authority, the IRS, as a charitable organization or private foundation. Neither does the fake foundation comply with the regulation to file Form 990.

After Project Brazen exposed Srivastava and his foundation, Srivastava lodged false claims with Google and Tumblr to remove the main article exposing his deceit. The journalists protested with Google and Tumblr for falling into Srivastava’s trap.

Immediately after that, Tumblr confirmed that it had removed several accounts and posts from its platform after its site was abused by Gaurav Srivastava. The Indian businessman used Tumblr’s backdating function to create posts that appeared to be from an earlier date, then used these posts as the basis for a copyright claim to manipulate Google results for his name in order to remove the Project Brazen fraud exposé of Srivastava.

Tumblr said that the blogs and their posts were removed “for violating community guidelines” after they were used in an attempt to remove factual stories about the businessman. The complex, international fraud carried out by Srivastava is the subject of increasing media interest after other allegations about Srivastava’s history of fraud came to light.