The recently released email thread between T.Jr. and Goldstone^ raise a few serious questions:
6/3/16-10:36 AM: Who is "Rhona" and what is her connection to T***p? Secretary? It appears Goldstone has had multiple contacts with T***p through "Rhona" prior to this.
6/3/16-10:53 AM: What was discussed in the "telecon" with Emin? Since the meeting went forward, and considering Manafort attended, it seems much of the earlier email was confirmed and the level of significance raised.
6/7/16-4:20 PM: The meeting is set with a "Russian government attorney", but no other description was given. Why this particular description? And why, during this string, are these people so calmly and openly writing about something so incredibly damaging?
Is this whole thing an elaborate ruse to discredit both the media and our security agencies?
It certainly reads too good to be true, and all the "information"/"leaks" comes from the T***p camp, T***p family friends and a suspected Russian operative.
Relevant Statute and Discussion
(assuming this is all real)
Ultimately, for the three, it comes down to whether they made a "solicitation". At present, the evidence suggests they accepted an invitation to meet for an offer of a contribution. To find a "solicitation" from T.Jr. will take more evidence than what is currently disclosed publicly. In either case, whether Natalia was able to deliver is irrelevant.
For Natalia, there are two issues: whether she, alone, or as part of a conspiracy (in which case the emails are, legally, tied to her), sought to contribute, and whether she is an "agent of a foreign principal" (the emails are only circumstantial evidence; there needs to be evidence of a more direct connection).
52 U.S. Code § 30121 - Contributions and donations by foreign nationals.
(a) Prohibition. It shall be unlawful for—
(1) a foreign national, directly or indirectly, to make—
(A) a contribution or donation of money or other thing of value, or to make an express or implied promise to make a contribution or donation, in connection with a Federal, State, or local election;
(B) a contribution or donation to a committee of a political party; ...
(2) a person to solicit*, accept, or receive a contribution or donation described in subparagraph (A) or (B) of paragraph (1) from a foreign national.
(b) “Foreign national” defined. As used in this section, the term “foreign national” means—
(1) a foreign principal, as such term is defined by [**] except that the term “foreign national” shall not include any individual who is a citizen of the United States; or
(2) an individual who is not a citizen of the United States or a national of the United States ... and who is not lawfully admitted for permanent residence, ... .
^for full texts, see https://www.vox.com/2017/7/11/15953204/donald-trump-jr-emails-russia
*Although the term "solicit" has a similar, but technically different, definition depending on whether the action is a civil or criminal case, unless the term is used in connection with a specific offense (or sexual solicitation), the definitions found in case law--which usually originate from civil cases--are used in criminal cases, also.
[uslegal.com] "In civil law, solicitation means any request or appeal, either oral or written, or any endeavor to obtain, seek or plead for funds, property, financial assistance or other thing of value, including the promise or grant of any money or property of any kind or value. Solicitations may be made in writing, in person, or by telephone and other electronic methods."
"A solicitation is considered as having taken place whether or not the person making the solicitation receives any contribution."
Individual jurisdictions (e.g., Federal, States, Territories) vary as to what else is considered a "solicit". Federal statutes appear not to have a definition not specific to a particular offence.
**22 U.S. Code § 611 - Definitions
(c)(1) ... The term “agent of a foreign principal” means—
(1) any person who acts as an agent, representative, employee, or servant, or any person who acts in any other capacity at the order, request, or under the direction or control, of a foreign principal or of a person any of whose activities are directly or indirectly supervised, directed, controlled, financed, or subsidized in whole or in major part by a foreign principal, and who directly or through any other person—
(i) engages within the United States in political activities for or in the interests of such foreign principal;
(ii) acts within the United States as a public relations counsel, publicity agent, information-service employee or political consultant for or in the interests of such foreign principal;
(iii) within the United States solicits, collects, disburses, or dispenses contributions, loans, money, or other things of value for or in the interest of such foreign principal; or
(iv) within the United States represents the interests of such foreign principal before any agency or official of the Government of the United States; and
(2) any person who agrees, consents, assumes or purports to act as, or who is or holds himself out to be, whether or not pursuant to contractual relationship, an agent of a foreign principal as defined in clause (1) of this subsection.