Whistleblower who was investigating Deutsche Bank found dead at LA high school
LOS ANGELES - A self-described "comically terrible spy" who is believed to have worked with federal authorities investigating the activities of Deutsche Bank and its ties with former President Donald Trump was found dead in Los Angeles.
Valentin Broeksmit, 45, was found about 7 a.m. Monday at Woodrow Wilson Senior High School at 4500 Multnomah Street, according to the Los Angeles County coroner's office. An autopsy was pending to determine his cause of death.
Broeksmit was reported missing last year, with police saying he was last seen around 4 p.m. April 6, 2021, driving a red Mini Cooper on Riverside Drive in Griffith Park. The Los Angeles Police Department reached out at the time for help from the public finding him.
Yet throughout his reported disappearance, Broeksmit's Twitter account -- @BikiniRobotArmy -- remained active. And he also apparently maintained contact with friends and journalists.
Investigative journalist Scott Stedman of the website Forensic News wrote on Twitter that he last spoke to Broeksmit in January.
He said Broeksmit "supplied me and other journalists with Deutsche Bank documents that highlighted the bank's deep Russia connections. It is very sad. I don't suspect foul play. Val struggled with drugs on and off. Waiting on further info."
He added: "Val's father took his own life in 2014 and it consumed Val in recent years. To see his life end so short is incredibly depressing."
Broeksmit's stepfather, William, was a Deutsche Bank executive.
According to various reports, Val Broeksmit offered hundreds of bank documents -- left behind by his father -- to federal investigators and journalists looking into ties between the financial institution and Trump.
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New York Times reporter David Enrich wrote in 2019 that Broeksmit helped the FBI in its probe of Deutsche Bank by providing investigators with the bank documents. He was also subpoenaed by the House Intelligence Committee during its probe of Trump's ties to the bank.
Enrich also wrote that Broeksmit had drug use issues and would often bend the truth to come up with "far-fetched theories." But Broeksmit was a central figure in Enrich's book, "Dark Towers: Deutsche Bank, Donald Trump and an Epic Trail of Destruction."
"This is terrible news," Enrich tweeted Tuesday after learning of Broeksmit's death. "Val was a longtime source of mine and the main character in my book. We had a complicated relationship, but this is just devastating to hear."