The judge in the trial of Paul Manafort scheduled an arraignment and plea agreement hearing Friday, signaling the former Trump campaign chairman has reached a deal with the special counsel’s office.
Earlier Friday, special counsel Robert Mueller filed a superseding criminal information document, which presages a plea deal. A criminal information describes the facts of the case as both sides agree on them.
The lengthy document says Mr. Manafort earned more than $60 million lobbying the U.S. as an unregistered agent of pro-Russian interests in Ukraine, then went to extensive efforts to launder the money, stashing it in offshore havens and even lying to his own accountants about it.
Prosecutors then detail efforts they say he made to conceal the operation, including lying to investigators in 2016 and again in 2017.
The details of the case have been laid out before.
Mr. Manafort was slated to go on trial next week in Washington on charges of being an unregistered foreign agent, laundering money and misleading investigators.
He was already found guilty in a separate trial in Virginia on tax fraud charges.
The new criminal information suggests the renewed investigation against Mr. Manafort came about because of press attention once he gained a prominent role in the Trump campaign, where he was first a top adviser and then later campaign chairman and, briefly, campaign manager.
It’s not clear if any of Mr. Manafort’s criminal activities took place during the months he was with the campaign. The bulk of the lobbying as an unregistered agent, as alleged in the documents, appears to have taken place before he was part of the campaign.
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Published at Fri, 14 Sep 2018 13:44:00 +0000