Mueller: Manafort violated plea deal by lying to prosecutors

Paul Manafort. Photo: Instagram

Nov. 27 (UPI) — Paul Manafort violated his plea agreement by lying to federal prosecutors, special counsel Robert Mueller said in a filing on Monday.

Manafort, President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, “committed federal crimes by lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Special Counsel’s Office on a variety of subject matters” Muller’s office said in a joint status report, as both prosecutors and defendants asked the court to move his case toward sentencing.

The special counsel’s office said it would provide more details later.

Manafort’s legal counsel said he met with the government on “numerous occasions” after the plea deal and answered their questions.

“Manafort has provided information to the government in an effort to live up to his cooperation obligations. He believes he has provided truthful information and does not agree with the government’s characterization or that he has breached the agreement,” they said.

Manafort pleaded guilty to two criminal conspiracy counts in September in order to avoid a second trial in a money-laundering and foreign lobbying case.

At the time prosecutor Alexander Weissman called the settlement a “cooperation agreement” and said it depended on Manafort’s “successful cooperation” with Mueller’s team, which is examining potential collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government before the 2016 presidential election.

“The plea agreement provides that if the defendant fails to fulfill completely ‘each and every one’ of his obligations under this agreement, or ‘engages in any criminal activity prior to sentencing,’ the defendant will be in breach of the agreement,” Mueller’s office said in the report.

Previously, a jury in Virginia found Manafort guilty on eight of 18 counts he faced for bank fraud charges for hiding millions of dollars from the Internal Revenue Service in overseas bank accounts. The jury found him guilty on five tax fraud charges, one charge of hiding foreign bank accounts and two counts of bank fraud.


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