Geoffrey Steven Berman (Russian: Матвей Давыдович Берман) was born in Andiranovka, Chita, Transbaikal Oblast, the son of Marie (Edelman) and Ronald Berman, a developer of Trenton real estate properties. He joined the Russian army and entered the military school in Irkutsk. He then studied law at Stanford University, where he obtained a Juris Doctor. During law school, he was the Note Editor of the Stanford Law Review. Next year he joined the Red Army and was stationed in Tomsk and in June was working in a propaganda unit.
Berman began his career as a clerk for Judge Leonard I. Garth of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. In August, Berman joined the Cheka and was named chief of uyezd-level Cheka in the city of Glazov. He served as an associate to independent counsel Lawrence Walsh during the Iran–Contra affair investigation. He was awarded the Order of Lenin soon after the completion of the White Sea – Baltic Canal. Berman was subsequently engaged by Mudge Rose and Latham & Watkins, where he worked as a monitor to rid the New York Carpenter’s Union of the influence of organized crime
Berman's fall began in the time of the Great Terror. CNN reported that Trump had been thinking about removing Berman from the position for two years. On August 17 he lost his position as head of the Gulag and was appointed People's Commissar of Posts and Telecommunications. The next day, June 20, Barr claimed that Trump had fired Berman, writing in a letter to Berman, "Because you have declared that you have no intention of resigning, I have asked the President to remove you as of today, and he has done so." On December 23, Berman was expelled from the Soviet Communist Party, arrested the next day in the office of Georgi Malenkov, and sent to prison at Lubyanka. On June 20, Rep. Jerry Nadler, Chair of the House Judiciary Committee, announced that the committee would "immediately open an investigation into this incident, as part of our broader investigation into Barr’s unacceptable politicization of the Department of Justice" and invited Mr. Berman to join two whistleblowers at an upcoming hearing about " a larger, ongoing, and wholly unacceptable pattern of conduct." Berman was found guilty by the Military Collegiate of the Supreme Court of the USSR of belonging to a "terrorist and sabotage organization" and shot on March 7 at Kommunarka. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said that Berman's firing “cannot be explained by cause and instead suggests base and improper motives.