Mueller accuses Manafort of breaking plea agreement by lying
Published: 08:08 PM, 27 November 2018 Updated: 08:08 PM, 27 November 2018
The special counsel in the Russia investigation is accusing former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort of violating his plea agreement by repeatedly lying to federal investigators, an extraordinary allegation that could expose him to a lengthier prison sentence - and potentially more criminal charges.
The torpedoing of Manafort's plea deal, disclosed in a court filing Monday, also results in special counsel Robert Mueller's team losing a cooperating witness from the top of Donald Trump's presidential campaign who was present for several key episodes under investigation. That includes a Trump Tower meeting involving Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer he was told had derogatory information on Democrat Hillary Clinton.
The move signals a return to the acrimonious relationship Manafort has had with the special counsel's office since his indictment last year. Before his plea agreement, Manafort aggressively challenged the special counsel's legitimacy in court, went through a bitter trial and landed himself in jail after prosecutors discovered he had attempted to tamper with witnesses in his case.
In the latest filing, Mueller's team said Manafort "committed federal crimes" by lying about "a variety of subject matters" even after he agreed to truthfully cooperate with the investigation. Prosecutors said they will detail the "nature of the defendant's crimes and lies" in writing at a later date to the judge.
Through his attorneys, Manafort denied lying, saying he "believes he provided truthful information" during a series of sessions with Mueller's investigators. He also disagreed that he breached his plea agreement. Still, both sides now agree they can't resolve the conflict, and U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson should set a date to sentence him.
Manafort, who remains jailed, had been meeting with the special counsel's office since he pleaded guilty in September to conspiracy against the United States and conspiracy to obstruct justice. He cut that deal to head off a second trial after being convicted last summer of eight felony counts related to millions of dollars he hid from the IRS in offshore accounts.
Both cases stemmed from his Ukrainian political work and undisclosed lobbying work he admitted to carrying out in the U.S. in violation of federal law.
As part of his plea agreement, Manafort pledged to "cooperate fully, truthfully, completely, and forthrightly" with the government "in any and all matters" prosecutors deemed necessary. That included his work on the Trump campaign as well as his Ukrainian political work, which remains under investigation by the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York.
Prosecutors there are looking into the conduct of longtime Democratic lobbyist Tony Podesta, former Obama White House counsel Greg Craig and former Republican congressman and lobbyist Vin Weber to determine whether they violated federal law by failing to register as foreign agents with the Justice Department. None of the men has been charged with any crimes.
As part of his plea deal, Manafort also forfeited many of his rights as well as his ability to withdraw the plea if he broke any of the terms. In return, prosecutors agreed to not bring additional charges against him and to ask a judge for a reduction of his sentence if he provided "substantial assistance."
But with prosecutors saying he breached the agreement, Manafort now faces serious repercussions such as the possibility of prosecution on additional charges including the 10 felony counts prosecutors dropped when he made the deal.
Manafort already faces up to five years in prison on the two charges in his plea agreement. In his separate Virginia case, Manafort's potential sentencing under federal guidelines has not yet been calculated, but prosecutors have previously said he could face as much as 10 years in prison on those charges.
He is scheduled to be sentenced in that case in February. His co-defendant, Rick Gates, who spent a longer time on the campaign and worked on the Trump inaugural committee, has not had a sentencing date set yet. He continues to cooperate with Mueller.
- Top 5 batsmen in Bangabandhu BPL
- Hero Alam wants to marry Popy!
- After bushfires, Australia now deals with floods!
- World’s shortest man Khagendra Thapa dies at 27
- Obaidul Quader mourns death of MP Mannan
- 560-pound IS leader ‘Jabba the Jihadi’ captured in Iraq
- U-19 World Cup: Aus faces WI today
- PM mourns death of MP Mannan
- Jashore car accident kills 3 including 2 sisters
- MP Abdul Mannan passes away
- Rajshahi lift BPL crown
- Countrymen living in peace: IGP
- Putin to attend Libya peace conference
- Mushfiqur refuses to tour Pakistan for T20Is
- Private car driver killed in Narsingdi road mishap
- Reunion of Psychology dept begins in RU
- Rajshahi post 170 in BPL final against Khulna
- Anwar succeeds in Squash farming
- 6 held in Naogaon anti-narcotics drive
- ‘He just want to avoid his duty’
- Young Tigers` World Cup mission starts tomorrow
- Doyel’s ‘Toshok’ Int’l Film Festival
- Businessman killed in Rajshahi road crash
- 3 detained in Akhaura with yaba tablet
- Khulna obt to bowl in BPL final
- Huawei launches 5G smartphone in Kuwait
- Youth crushed under train at Pubail
- BPL`s Man of the tournament winners
- Cricket Australia CEO to be in BPL final
- Turkey begins to deploy troops in Libya
- All News »
- Ticket price of BPL final increased
- BPL`s Man of the tournament winners
- Youth killed in road crash after returning home 24 yrs later
- British diplomat arrested in Iran
- ‘Unintentionally’ shot down Ukrainian jetliner: Iran
- PM mourns death of Oman Sultan
- Obscure’s Prince dies
- Magnitude 5.9 jolts quake-stunned Puerto Rico again
- ‘All coaching centers to remain shut from Jan 25’
- PM joins Bishwa Ijtema Akheri Munajat
- Asia’s most costly cricket stadium to be built in Bangladesh!
- Pakistan snowfall death toll rises to 104
- 32% work of Bangabandhu Novo Theatre in Rajshahi completed
- Country shivers as 4th cold wave of season begins
- Snow, rain, flash floods leave 43 dead in Pakistan, Afghanistan
- 28 institutes named after Bangabandhu and family members
- Russell hero as Rajshahi through final
- Oman Sultan Qaboos dies at 79
- Apu Biswas to rock two shows in India
- Reaction of Canadian PM after Iran admitting mistake
- Flight operations at HSIA still halted today
- Teachers-guardians’ help for cheat in exam shameful: President
- Heitham Bin Tariq sworn in as Oman’s new Sultan
- Verdict in Myanmar genocide case Jan 23
- 12 devotees die during 1st phase of Ijtema
- Bangladesh on right track to attain SDGs: PM
- Queen, Prince Harry to hold talks over Sussexes’ future
- Khulna Tigers opt to bowl to ensure top in BPL
- 11 killed in US storm-flood
- Thousands of devotees walking to Turag