Quantcast
Connect with us

Key players in US case versus ex-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort

Published

on

U.S. President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort on Tuesday will become the first person to go to trial after being ensnared in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Here are some of the key players in the case against Manafort, 69, a veteran Washington political operative who briefly managed Trump’s campaign from May to August 2016.

ADVERTISEMENT

* The defendant

Manafort has pleaded not guilty to 18 counts of bank fraud, tax fraud and failing to report foreign bank accounts. The trial was not expected to delve deeply into Manafort’s campaign work for Trump, but it will likely shed light on his lobbying, his ties to pro-Russian Ukrainians and how he allegedly funneled cash through offshore accounts to finance a lavish lifestyle.

He faces two criminal trials, the first in Alexandria, Virginia, and another later in Washington. His bail was revoked on June 15, and he remains jailed ahead of his trial.

* The special counsel

Mueller, appointed in May 2017 to his current post, has been running a wide-ranging inquiry that has charged 32 people, including 26 Russians, and others in Trump’s campaign orbit. Mueller himself was not expected to play a high-profile role in the court proceedings. Trump attacked Mueller in a series of tweets on Sunday and has called the Russia probe a witch hunt.

ADVERTISEMENT

* The judge

Judge T.S. Ellis will preside in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. Appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1987, Ellis has questioned the scope of Mueller’s probe and said Manafort’s indictment seemed to be aimed at getting him to provide information on Trump.

* The prosecutors

ADVERTISEMENT

Seven prosecutors from Mueller’s office were expected to feature prominently in the trial, including veteran government attorneys Andrew Weissmann and Greg Andres, who returned to the government from private practice to work on Mueller’s probe.

* The defense

ADVERTISEMENT

Manafort’s team includes Kevin Downing, Thomas Zehnle, Richard Westling and Jay Rohit Nanavati, all former prosecutors with complex tax fraud case experience.

* The witnesses

A star government witness will be Richard Gates, a former deputy Trump campaign chairman and former Manafort business associate. Gates has agreed to cooperate with the Mueller probe. He pleaded guilty in February to conspiring against the United States and lying to investigators.

ADVERTISEMENT

Dennis Raico and James Brennan worked at Federal Savings Bank, a Chicago lender that extended Manafort $16 million in loans against his New York real estate holdings. The two were granted immunity in exchange for testimony.

Donna Duggan, Cindy Laporta and Conor O’Brien also were granted immunity to testify against Manafort. Duggan is an insurance agent with Moody Insurance Worldwide who worked on insurance related to a Brooklyn, New York, townhouse against which Manafort borrowed money from Federal Savings Bank. Laporta and O’Brien will testify about the preparation of Manafort’s tax returns by Virginia-based accounting firm KWC.

Tad Devine is a consultant who worked with Manafort in Ukraine. He will testify as a fact witness in the trial.

* Others

ADVERTISEMENT

Viktor Yanukovych is the former pro-Russia president of Ukraine. He was Manafort’s top client until he was removed from power and fled to Russia in 2014. Prosecutors allege that Manafort hid income he earned through political consulting for Yanukovych and funneled it through offshore accounts.

Konstantin Kilimnik, a political consultant and one-time associate of Manafort, has been accused by prosecutors in the Washington case of having ties to Russian intelligence and helping Manafort try to tamper with witnesses. It was unclear if his role would surface during the first trial in Virginia.

Tony Podesta and Vin Weber are lobbyists whose firms, Podesta Group and Mercury Public Affairs, previously worked at Manafort’s direction to lobby for the European Centre for a Modern Ukraine. Their roles were expected to feature more prominently in the Washington trial later this autumn.

Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch, Nathan Layne, Daphne Psaledakis, Warren Strobel, John Whitesides; Compiled by Sarah N. Lynch and Daphne Psaledakis; Editing by Kevin Drawbaugh, Dan Burns and Peter Cooney

ADVERTISEMENT


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Lindsey Graham promises Fox viewers a new investigation into Andrew McCabe despite the Justice Dept clearing him

Published

on

Appearing on the Fox Business channel with host Maria Bartiromo, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) promised viewers he fully intends to use his position as the head of the Senate Judiciary Committee to launch his own investigation into former Deputy Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Andrew McCabe despite the former law enforcement official already having been cleared by the Justice Department.

Complaining that the controversial Steele dossier was based on " a bunch of bar-talk and hearsay," Graham said he plans to call -- at the very least -- McCabe and former FBI Director James Comey in to be grilled by his committee.

Continue Reading

Facebook

MSNBC guest goes off on Chris Matthews for comparing Sanders to Nazis: ‘He had kin murdered in the Holocaust’

Published

on

Time magazine editor Anand Giridharadas criticized MSNBC host Chris Matthews over the weekend for his alleged bias against Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders.

Giridharadas remarks came after Matthews compared Sanders' win in Nevada to a Nazi invasion.

"Last night was a historic win that I think a lot of us are still struggling to understand," Giridharadas explained. "It's historic because we may be seeing that we are paddling through a bend of a river in history here. Something is happening in America right now that actually does not fit our mental models."

Continue Reading
 

2020 Election

‘Kiss Florida goodbye’: Voto Latino head warns Democrats of coming 2020 debacle

Published

on

Appearing on MSNBC's "AM Joy," Voto Latino CEO María Teresa Kumar said Democrats should not count on taking Florida's 29 electoral votes in the upcoming 2020 presidential election if Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is the at the top of the ticket.

During a fairly contentious panel discussion on the viability of Sanders as a candidate due to self-identifying as a democratic socialist, Kumar claimed that would not play well Florida's Latino community.

"All I can think about when David [Corn] was unpacking it for us, we can all agree is you can kiss Florida goodbye," she explained. "I say that, Floridians -- Latinos that have fled socialism, they have fled and they are in Florida and they have sensibilities that are different from the rest of the Latino community."

Continue Reading
 
 
close-image