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Russia: New charges for Paul Manafort and Rick Gates

23 February, 2018, 02:09 | Author: Melinda Barton
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A federal grand jury in Virginia returned a new 32-count indictment against former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort and his longtime associate Rick Gates, special counsel Robert Mueller's office revealed in court filings on Thursday.

The investigation by Mr. Mueller's team is centered on whether the loans from Federal Savings Bank, a small bank in Chicago run by chief executive Steve Calk, were made as part of a quid pro quo arrangement to secure Mr. Calk a job in Mr. Trump's administration, the person said. He did not respond to WGN's requests for comment. According to court papers attached to his plea agreement, the conversations, including some using encrypted applications, occurred in September 2016 and involved possible criminal charges being brought in Ukraine against a former Ukrainian official, Manafort and "Law Firm A", an apparent reference to Skadden Arps.

The president of FSB is Stephen Calk, who was named to President Donald Trump's Council of Economic Advisers in August 2016.

They were among the first to be charged, as part of Mueller's ongoing investigation into whether the Trump presidential campaign colluded with Russian Federation to influence the 2016 election. Mr Gates did so with roughly $3m, according to the charges. In July, Bloomberg reported that Calk's Federal Savings Bank won a "seven-figure" investment from real-estate magnate Howard Lorber, whom Trump once described as his best friend.

Manafort, who was Trump's campaign manager for nearly five months in 2016, and Gates, who was deputy campaign manager, pleaded not guilty past year to Mueller's charges. As the president tweeted last October - around the same time Gates was allegedly lying to his tax preparer - Manafort's crimes took place "years ago". Gates and Manafort accused of fraud, money laundering, conspiracy against USA interests and deceiving the American authorities regarding their cooperation with the ex-President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych.

Both men are accused of nine counts of bank fraud and conspiracy to commit bank fraud.

Manafort left the Trump campaign after the millions he had earned working for a pro-Russian political party drew scrutiny.


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