Five things to know about the Manafort indictment

Oct 30, 2017


President Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort surrendered to the FBI on Monday morning.

Manafort and his business associate Rick Gates are accused of money laundering and tax evasion on tens of millions of dollars they made while secretly lobbying for a political party in Ukraine.

Although the sprawling 31-page indictment is a major milestone in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, it doesn’t actually mention President Trump.

Here are five things to know about the indictment:

Manafort was secretly lobbying for a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine.

Manafort and Gates are alleged to have conducted a multimillion-dollar lobbying campaign on behalf of a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine and its now-exiled leader, Viktor Yanukovych.

Continue reading by clicking the name of the source below.

21 comments on “Five things to know about the Manafort indictment

  • @OP – link – In addition to conspiracy and money laundering charges, the two also face charges of acting as unregistered agents of a foreign principal, making false and misleading statements about their overseas work, and failing to file the correct paperwork in connection with their foreign bank and financial accounts.

    In sum, Manafort is accused of laundering $18 million.

    He sounds just like one of Trump’s choice selection of “Great deal-making artists”! 🙂

    Report abuse

  • It seems that Trump’s made up denials and lying, are becoming more blatantly transparent by the minute!

    An election campaign adviser to Donald Trump has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about the timing of meetings with alleged go-betweens for Russia.

    George Papadopoulos admitted the talks happened while he worked for Mr Trump, not before, court papers show.

    He said he had been told the Russians possessed “dirt” on Hillary Clinton.

    The charges are the first to be brought by Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating alleged links between Russia and the Trump campaign.

    How does the Papadopoulos case affect Trump?

    It has the potential to damage the US leader because it relates directly to his campaign, analysts say.

    According to the court documents, Mr Trump’s former foreign policy adviser admitted on 5 October to having impeded the FBI’s investigation into alleged collusion with Russia.

    When he was interviewed by the FBI this January, he falsely claimed that he had met two figures with Russian connections before joining the Trump campaign in March 2016. In fact, he met them after joining the campaign.

    One was an unnamed Russian woman who, Mr Papadopoulos believed, had connections to Russian government officials.

    He admitted seeking to use her connections in an effort to arrange a meeting “between the Campaign and Russian government officials”.

    The other person was an unnamed, London-based professor who was said to have “substantial connections to Russian government officials”.

    The professor only took an interest in Mr Papadopoulos because of his status within the Trump campaign, the statement says.

    Russian “dirt” on Mrs Clinton, in the form of “thousands of emails”, was allegedly mentioned by the professor at a breakfast meeting in a London hotel on or around 26 April 2016.

    The professor said he had been informed about the compromising emails when he met senior Russian government officials on a recent trip to Moscow.

    Initial headlines on Monday morning were about Paul Manafort’s indictment for money laundering and undisclosed foreign lobbying activities. The real blockbuster, however, may end up being George Papadopoulos’s plea bargain, which was disclosed shortly after the Manafort news came out.

    Unlike Mr Manafort, pinched for activities largely conducted before he joined the Trump team, Mr Papadopoulos has admitted to lying to the FBI about contacts he had with Russian nationals while serving as a Trump foreign policy adviser.

    Mr Papadopoulos’s indictment document reveals he learned from his connections that Russia claimed to have “dirt” on Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the form of “thousands of emails” in a late April 2016 meeting. Damaging emails from the Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign chair John Podesta started emerging, through Wikileaks, just a few months later.

    Now Mr Papadopoulos is co-operating with the independent counsel’s office.
    At the very least, he has told them who in the top levels of the Trump campaign he was passing this information to.

    Report abuse

  • Just finished reading the original indictments on Manafort and Gates. The charges are detailed, serious and extensive. On the surface don’t know how they avoid facing some serious punishment, likely heavy jail time.

    Report abuse

  • @#2 – Now Mr Papadopoulos is co-operating with the independent counsel’s office.

    A Democrat said Mr Clovis’ nomination was only withdrawn because he would have faced questions under oath about the Trump campaign’s dealings with Russia.

    This week he cropped up in a criminal indictment against a former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser, George Papadopoulos.

    Mr Clovis’ lawyer says his client is the “campaign supervisor” in the charge-sheet who encouraged Papadopoulos, a junior aide, to pursue back channel contacts with Kremlin-connected officials.

    The net is closing on other squirming Trump team members!

    Report abuse

  • The sheer scale of the lying from Trump and everyone connected to him is mind blowing. It’s ironic that Flynn was supposedly fired for lying to bobblehead Pence when they all lie continuously to Congress and the world anyway. I think we all knew that Sessions was lying to Congress about Russia. Now Carter Page says he told Sessions about a trip to Russia back in 2016. Sessions’ testimony reminded me very much of Bush 43’s AG Alberto Gonzales senate testimony claiming at least 70 times “he didn’t recall” any details of pretty much everything he was asked about. What’s even more ironic is that a particular Alabama senator got quite irate with his prevarication and the following exchange ensured.

    GONZALES: Well, Senator, putting aside the issue, of course, sometimes people’s recollections are different, I have no reason to doubt Mr. Battle’s testimony [about the November meeting].

    SESSIONS: Well, I guess I’m concerned about your recollection, really, because it’s not that long ago. It was an important issue. And that’s troubling to me, I’ve got to tell you.

    But Sessions had absolutely no problem with pulling “a Gonzales” on multiple occasions when it was himself being questioned this year. None of these people would know truth, honour, or morality if they were hit over the head with them.

    A democracy can’t work when one side has no honour and you can’t trust anything they say. This inexorable rise of mendacity in Republican politics has been because there simply does not seem to be any penalty for it. Much of the blame lies with Bush 43 whose whole administration lied for 18 months about WMDs and fictitious links between Iraq and Al Qaeda. Not only was there no penalty for this but every Repub bar one voted for the war that those lies paved the way for. It sent the message why bother with being truthful when lies get you where you want to go more easily. Trump and his sycophants have now taken this to the logical conclusion. No truth whatsoever. Combined with an electorate that is so low information, so easily duped and so partisan they only want to hear what they already believe we have ended up with a Demonocracy rather than a democracy.

    A party with no morality are not surprisingly never going to do anything moral. Their various attempts at healthcare legislation were simply designed to kill the poor in order to pay the rich. Now their tax plan is similarly designed to fleece the poor and middle class to pay the rich again. If America ever wants to be “great” again then first it must find some honour and morality and those without any of that must be voted out.

    Report abuse

  • Arkrid Sandwich #5
    Nov 4, 2017 at 5:57 am

    The sheer scale of the lying from Trump and everyone connected to him is mind blowing.

    It seems that criticism of Trump from those with experience and expertise in various fields, is not confined to scientists, administrators, diplomats, economists, or Democrats!

    Former US Republican President George Bush Sr has confirmed he voted for Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election, labelling Donald Trump a “blowhard”.

    “Blowhard” is a casual term for a person who is boastful or blustering, the Oxford English Dictionary says, and it is usually meant as an insult.

    His son, George W Bush, said he worries that “I will be the last Republican president”, even though President Trump is a Republican.

    “This guy doesn’t know what it means to be president,” the younger man said.

    The pair’s comments come from a new book, titled The Last Republicans.

    Preview excerpts from the book were published by US media outlets.

    George W Bush, adding to his remarks that Mr Trump “doesn’t know what it means to be president,” said “you can either exploit the anger, incite it, or you can come up with ideas to deal with it.”

    During the 2016 presidential campaign, neither former president endorsed Donald Trump.

    But in the new book, George Bush Sr confirmed that he voted for the rival party’s candidate in Hillary Clinton.

    George W Bush, however, said he simply left his presidential ballot blank.

    White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders hit back at the former presidents in a statement.

    The American people voted to elect an outsider who is capable of implementing real, positive, and needed change – instead of a lifelong politician beholden to special interests,” she said.

    Apparently, she said it with the straight face of a seasoned liar – and without a hint of irony! – somehow forgetting about the electoral college vote contradicting her “alternative facts”! 🙂

    Report abuse

  • Special interests! Not beholden to special interests!

    Trump Used To Brag That He Wasn’t Controlled By Special Interests. Today, Everything Changes.
    JUN 9, 2016, 5:44 PM

    Beyond his partnership with the RNC, Trump is reportedly courting wealthy potential donors more directly. The Daily Beast reports that on Thursday, “Donald Trump will assemble a group of high-powered lobbyists… so they can pitch him on their special interests behind closed doors at Trump Tower.”

    There are also good “special interest” groups.

    “The days of regulation through litigation are over,” EPA chief Scott Pruitt declared in a statement. “We will no longer go behind closed doors and use consent decrees and settlement agreements to resolve lawsuits filed against the Agency by special interest groups where doing so would circumvent the regulatory process set forth by Congress.”

    What a disaster this is.

    Report abuse

  • Another Russian connection?

    A huge new leak of financial documents has revealed how the powerful and ultra-wealthy, including the Queen’s private estate, secretly invest vast amounts of cash in offshore tax havens.

    Donald Trump’s commerce secretary is shown to have a stake in a firm dealing with Russians sanctioned by the US.

    The leak, dubbed the Paradise Papers, contains 13.4m documents, mostly from one leading firm in offshore finance.

    Report abuse

  • My friend Bill, a very level-headed person, just sent me this. Laurie, you asked if things can be reversed. War is one thing that can’t be.

    “Trump going to start war, his administration is already paving the road for it, one of his generals said that it will take a massive foot invasion to disable north korea nukes, it is like they are starting to prepare the public, Trump said last night in s korea that all options are on the table including some that ” I hope and pray to god don’t have to be used”. Millions will die, it will be a world war.”

    Heightened militarism is one of the hallmarks of fascist regimes, and we all know that Trump is a fascist at heart. The mendacity and disdain for the press, his slanderous words, and the desire to eliminate opposition and accountability and the corruption and the nefarious thugs he has working around him – all suggest an authoritarian fascist, to me. No respect for the rule of law. Power without decency or compassion, that is, no simple human understanding.

    Report abuse

  • Dan

    I think Trump & Co. have been laying the groundwork for this trouble from the beginning. I can’t even get a handle on how serious this threat is from inside this bubble. That’s why I’ve been interested in reading what the Europeans here have said about the situation. I’m also worried about the Saudi shake-up happening now and the American role in it. Wonder boy Kushner has been sticking his unqualified nose into that hornets’ nest and no good can come of that. Lebanon also on edge. Ignorant buffoon commander in chief of American military. Screwed.

    Report abuse

  • Dan

    Have you noticed a guy named Richard Painter on TV? He is sometimes included in those lineups of talking heads. I’m absolutely digging this guy and his blunt pronouncements on legal ethics. He was an ethics lawyer for the Bush Administration (ya, ya, say what you want) but check him out when he’s lambasting the current administration for the dastardly corruption going on there. This guy:

    Report abuse

  • LaurieB #10
    Nov 7, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    I think Trump & Co. have been laying the groundwork for this trouble from the beginning.

    Trump routinely has this sort of trouble with people who try to negotiate with him on anything! Trouble is normal to him – as is the use of ad-hom attacks on critics or those who won’t kowtow to him or his lunatic assertions! ! (see #17 and #18 on this earlier thread)


    Voters who did their homework, should have seen the problems in the historical record of Trump activities!

    Report abuse

  • This is not funny. How many times have I said that Alec Baldwin and other money makers should cut it out for a while? Trump is NOT funny and we are not safe (an allusion to a proposed humor theory on humor thread), and we all need to be awake if we are facing possible annihilation or a nuclear conflagration: with people as unstable as Trump and what’s-his-face in N Korea this could be the end of civilization. (Could be.)

    Seoul (CNN)Standing near the front line of the world’s tensest standoff, President Donald Trump on Wednesday issued a direct and personal warning to North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, declaring during his first major speech in Asia that continued nuclear provocation could result in the communist nation’s obliteration.

    “The weapons you are acquiring are not making you safer, they are putting your regime in grave danger,” Trump said during an address at South Korea’s National Assembly in Seoul. “Every step you take down this dark path increases the peril you face.”

    “That would be a fatal miscalculation,” he said of North Korean threats to strike the US and its allies. “This a very different administration than the United States has had in the past. Do not underestimate us. And do not try us.”

    Trump reiterated that point on Twitter Wednesday evening: “NoKo has interpreted America’s past restraint as weakness. This would be a fatal miscalculation. Do not underestimate us. AND DO NOT TRY US,” he tweeted.

    Report abuse

  • Russian meddling. Nothing’s been done about it. Propaganda from here and abroad out of control. Awful. YouTube is now a cesspool.

    August 2016: Clinton Cash

    Williams and Kalvin mentioned Hillary Clinton again in their 12th video (“‘CLINTON CASH’ SAYS IT ALL”), which was released just after their video about the DNC protests.

    Clinton Cash was essentially a high-priced smear campaign against Hillary Clinton. The book got most of its funding from the Mercer family, who were also among Trump’s top donors. The billionaire family is also a major backer of the data firm Cambridge Analytica and helped fund Breitbart News under Steve Bannon’s leadership. Bannon would later go on to produce a film version of the book on the eve of the Democratic National Convention, just before he joined the Trump campaign. The film was specifically edited to appeal to angry supporters of Bernie Sanders. As Nancy LeTourneau reported in Washington Monthly, the book and subsequent film were a huge part of the Trump campaign’s orchestrated effort to undermine Hillary Clinton through the dissemination of weaponized information and disinformation.

    In the video on William and Kalvin’s YouTube page, the host begins by stating, “I support Bernie Sanders,” and then goes on to endorse the movie Clinton Cash.

    Around the same time that Williams and Kalvin were endorsing Clinton Cash on their Russian-backed YouTube page, Breitbart news was doing the same (see here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here, for example).

    Report abuse

  • Well following on from my post #5 about Republican mendacity, Jeff Sessions gets another grilling in congress and makes it even more apparent that the only things he ever has any recollection about are those that the media has already discovered and made public; he somehow manages to forget everything that he thinks is still secret to the Trump campaign.

    Meanwhile the member of the Trump family who seems to be even dumber than daddy Trump now turns out to have been communicating directly with Wikileaks during the campaign which is just the latest in a long line of things he started off saying he’d never done.

    The revelations just keep drip drip dripping out even though frankly it’s been an awful long time now since any of the Trump team’s claims to have had no contact with Russia bore the slightest resemblance to the truth.

    I think we’re all suffering from a sort of mendacity overload. The lying has been so egregious, so constant and for so long it sort of washes over us. It’s actually now a surprise when someone associated with Trump says anything truthful because that’s the only thing that is rare enough to have any shock value left. As for Trump himself, an article I saw yesterday has calculated that he’s lied 5.5 times a day on average for every day he’s been President. I suspect that each one of those days accounts for more untruthfulness than the entire 8 years of Obama’s presidency.

    Report abuse

  • Arkrid Sandwich #5
    Nov 4, 2017 at 5:57 am

    The sheer scale of the lying from Trump and everyone connected to him is mind blowing.

    Apparently there are “confidentiality agreements” making the president’s unpreparedness and delusional incompetence, into “state secrets” to be kept from the voters!

    US President Donald Trump’s lawyers have written to his former strategist Steve Bannon, saying he has violated a non-disclosure agreement.

    Those public interest disclosures, REALLY can upset politicians!

    The cease-and-desist notice accuses Mr Bannon of defaming the president in speaking to author Michael Wolff.

    Wolff’s forthcoming tell-all book describes the president as being unprepared for the job.

    Mr Trump responded by saying Mr Bannon had “lost his mind” after losing his White House position.

    His lawyers said Mr Bannon had broken his employment agreement by speaking to Wolff about Mr Trump and his family, “disclosing confidential information” and “making disparaging statements and in some cases outright defamatory statements to Mr Wolff about Mr Trump, his family members, and the Company”.

    According to New York magazine, which first published the extracts, Wolff was able to exploit the Trump administration’s political inexperience to gain an unusual amount of insight.

    “There were no ground rules placed on his access, and he was required to make no promises about how he would report on what he witnessed,” it says.

    Wolff said he was able to take up “something like a semi-permanent seat on a couch in the West Wing” following the president’s inauguration.

    Five things Trump thinks about Bannon now (Video on link)

    “Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my presidency,”
    Mr Trump said in a statement on Wednesday.

    An inevitable break-up

    Anthony Zurcher, BBC News, Washington

    Donald Trump swept to the presidency in part on the back of Steve Bannon and his Breitbart conservative media empire. Now we will see how he fares when he is at war with them.

    The president’s blistering reply to Mr Bannon’s comments appears to indicate that the bridge between the politician and his ideological spirit guide has been reduced to cinders. But how will Mr Trump’s legion of supporters react?
    It is never wise to underestimate their dedication to the man himself, above all else.

    No matter the outcome of this coming battle, this has to be viewed as a devastating failure for Mr Bannon personally.
    After spending years advocating for an anti-establishment conservative populism, he finally had a seat in the halls of power.
    He said in early 2017 that his goal was nothing short of the “deconstruction of the administrative state”.

    Now he is on the outside again, besieged by long-time antagonists and former allies.
    His president recently signed a tax bill embraced by corporate interests. His first post-2016 foray into elective politics, the Alabama Senate race, ended in humiliating defeat.

    Perhaps, given all this, the Bannon-Trump feud was as inevitable as it is certain to be vicious.

    Report abuse

  • @#18 – US President Donald Trump’s lawyers have written to his former strategist Steve Bannon, saying he has violated a non-disclosure agreement.

    Let’s see how non-disclosure agreements stand up in
    front of a Grand Jury investigating public and national interest issues?

    Trump Russia: Bannon ‘ordered to testify to grand jury’

    Steve Bannon, former chief strategist to US President Donald Trump, has been summoned to testify before a grand jury, US media report.

    He was reportedly subpoenaed by former FBI director Robert Mueller, who is leading an inquiry into alleged collusion with Russia during the 2016 election campaign.

    Mr Bannon appeared separately on Tuesday before a Congressional panel.

    Congress is holding its own inquiry into the allegations.

    Report abuse


    Steve Bannon, ex-chief strategist to US President Donald Trump, has refused to answer a broad range of questions at a committee hearing probing alleged links between the Trump campaign and Russia.

    Mr Bannon had been called to testify in front of the House Intelligence Committee about his time working for Mr Trump.

    He was questioned behind closed doors on Tuesday in a 10-hour meeting.

    A Democrat on the committee believes he was under a White House “gag order”.

    Representative Adam Schiff said that Mr Bannon’s lawyer had cited “executive privilege” – which allows the president to keep information from the public.

    “Steve Bannon and his attorney asserted a remarkably broad definition of executive privilege,” Jim Himes, a Democratic member of the committee, told CNN.

    The committee issued a subpoena for him to return for a second round. His first appearance was voluntary.

    The investigating committees need to stop pussyfooting around, follow formal procedures, squash “creative interpretations of the law”, and dump some of these clowns in jail for contempt, until they give proper answers under oath!

    Republican member Mike Conaway told the press that Mr Bannon was “not an executive”, and the committee was “going to resolve the issues to get the answers”.

    Earlier on Tuesday, it was reported that Mr Bannon had been issued with another subpoena, this time from former FBI director Robert Mueller, who is leading the inquiry into alleged Russian collusion during the 2016 election campaign.

    The House Intelligence Committee is one of four investigations being conducted by Congress into the alleged collusion, with others launched by the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Senate Judiciary Committee and the House Oversight Committee.

    Report abuse

  • Meanwhile:-

    Fire and Fury: Trump exposé to become television series

    **The bestselling exposé Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House by journalist Michael Wolff is about to hit the small screen.

    According to Hollywood Reporter, Mr Wolff has sold television rights for seven figures.

    President Trump has condemned the book, which depicts a chaotic administration and a president unfit for office, as full of made-up stories.

    It is not yet known which network will screen the series.

    The rights have been sold to Endeavor Content and Mr Wolff will executive produce the project alongside former Channel 4 and BBC executive Michael Jackson, who now runs Two Cities Television.

    Mr Wolff wrote the exposé after a year of unprecedented access to the White House and staff in Mr Trump’s administration.

    The contentious book was published in January and has already sold more than a million copies.

    After leaked excerpts created a public sensation, Mr Trump responded angrily on Twitter, calling the book “boring and untruthful” and written by a “total loser”.

    Mr Wolff thanked the president in an NBC interview, saying “not only is he helping me sell books, but he’s helping me prove the point of the book.”

    It sounds like there could be a global market for this production!

    Report abuse

Leave a Reply

View our comment policy.