How a Reuters correspondent captured exclusive photos of Trump personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and Ukrainian businessman and political operative Lev Parnas

U.S. President Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani has coffee with Ukrainian-American businessman Lev Parnas at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, U.S. September 20, 2019. REUTERS/Aram Roston

A Reuters image of Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani having coffee with Ukrainian businessman and political operative Lev Parnas at the Trump Hotel in September went viral on Thursday following the arrests of two of Giuliani’s associates, including Parnas.

The photo, taken by Reuters correspondent Aram Roston, was one of chance: Aram and a colleague happened upon the meeting at the coffee shop and sensed a newsworthy opportunity. Without a professional photographer by his side, Aram snapped a few images with his iPhone and later sent them to the Reuters photo desk for transmission on the Reuters wire.

Weeks later, when Parnas was arrested, the photos topped news outlets around the U.S., including the New York Times, the Washington Post, MSNBC and the New York Post.

On being in the right place at the right time to capture the moment, Aram said, “I got a tip that Lev Parnas was at the Trump Hotel – somewhere, but I didn’t know where. I walked in and what should I see but him sitting there, tucked in the back, with Rudy Guiliani and some others. … I was just trying to capture the scene for writing purposes, not even thinking that Reuters would use them. But when I got back to the bureau, my editor suggested showing them to the pictures desk and they immediately wanted to run them on the wire.”

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[Reuters PR Blog Post]