US judge denies Manafort's request to modify his bail terms
- Author: Ronnie Bowen Feb 23, 2018,
Feb 23, 2018, 2:09
Former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort and his former partner Richard Gates were hit yesterday with fresh charges of tax and bank fraud, as special Russian Federation meddling prosecutor Robert Mueller stepped up pressure on the president's former aides. According to NBC News, "at least one of the bank employees who felt pressured into approving the deals is cooperating with investigators".
The charges are part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russian Federation to sway the 2016 presidential election.
The loans in question were made to Manafort in December of 2016 and January of 2017 and relied on his homes in the Hamptons and Brooklyn as collateral. But White House lawyers and Mr. Manafort's associates have been adamant that he does not have any information that could hurt Mr. Trump.
Mr. Mueller's team indicated in a court filing last week that it had uncovered "additional criminal conduct" concerning some of the loans on Mr. Manafort's properties from Mr. Calk's bank.
Both Manafort and Gates visited the federal courthouse in Washington on Tuesday without their lawyers for reasons that are still unclear.
Sixteen of the 32 counts relate to false individual income tax returns, seven were for failure to report foreign accounts, five for bank fraud conspiracy and four for bank fraud.
In the indictment released Thursday, prosecutors allege Manafort and Gates "hid the existence and ownership of the foreign companies and bank accounts" they oversaw and laundered more than $30 million in income.
The filing comes a week after prosecutors said they had new evidence that Manafort took part in a "series of bank fraud conspiracies".
But legal experts said the charge would put more pressure on the former Trump aides to cooperate with Mueller as he looks into whether Russian Federation tried to influence the election in favor of Trump by hacking the emails of leading Democrats and distributing disinformation and propaganda online.
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