Five things to know about the Manafort indictment

BY JONATHAN EASLEY AND MORGAN CHALFANT

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.

17 COMMENTS

  1. @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”! 🙂

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

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-41808227

    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.

  3. 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.

  4. @#2 – Now Mr Papadopoulos is co-operating with the independent counsel’s office.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-41848155

    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!

  5. 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.

  6. 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!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-41871958

    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”! 🙂

  7. Special interests! Not beholden to special interests!

    Trump Used To Brag That He Wasn’t Controlled By Special Interests. Today, Everything Changes.
    AARON RUPAR
    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.

  8. Another Russian connection?

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41876942

    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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3hN7uStN5g

  12. Yes, I’ve been pleased with Schmidt’s commentary.

    Waiting for Maddow’s analysis later tonight. Hoping for the best for today’s elections.

  13. 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)

    [https://www.richarddawkins.net/2016/12/climate-change-skeptic-to-head-epa-mcmorris-rodgers-as-interior-secretary/#li-comment-216230](https://www.richarddawkins.net/2016/12/climate-change-skeptic-to-head-epa-mcmorris-rodgers-as-interior-secretary/#li-comment-216230

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

  14. 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.

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

    https://arcdigital.media/i-watched-over-100-covert-russian-propaganda-videos-on-youtube-heres-what-i-saw-b854b69762f2

    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).

  16. 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.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/donald-trump-jrs-incredible-history-of-dumb-decisions/2017/11/14/928d5c62-c964-11e7-8321-481fd63f174d_story.html?utm_term=.b25a9939cc2f

    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.

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