Manafort calls new obstruction charges 'dubious'

Geraldine Edwards
June 11, 2018

The charges do not relate to Manafort's work on the Trump campaign or involve allegations of Russian election interference, a fact that the president has routinely noted as he tried to distance himself from his former top campaign adviser. The memo says the Federal Bureau of Investigation agents assisting Mueller "assess that Person A has ties to a Russian intelligence service and had such ties in 2016".

Trump has repeatedly called the Mueller investigation a "witch hunt" and denied any collusion with Russian Federation.

What kind of foreign work did Manafort do?

A GOP operative who worked for former Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, Manafort reportedly began his work in Republican politics in the 1970s. The article said, among other things, that the Hapsburg Group worked in the U.S. and in Europe. Kilimnik also allegedly sought to contact witnesses in April.

He is now on house arrest at his condo in Alexandria, Virginia, and has a $10 million unsecured bail.

Manafort has acknowledged staying in frequent contact with Kilimnik during the time he worked for Trump's campaign.

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CNBC reported that Manafort's Trump Tower purchase was an "all-cash deal".

Just two months later, Manafort became Trump's campaign chairman.

"The indictment serves a strategic objective in raising public awareness about the connections that those who worked on Trump's campaign had with Russians, and it serves a legal goal by putting more pressure on Manafort to become a cooperating witness", the story says.

The government has not charged Manafort with the crime of witness-tampering or obstruction of justice.

Former Donald Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his attorneys struck back at special counsel Robert Mueller's charges of witness tampering late Friday, calling them based on the "thinnest of evidence".

According to Ukrainian journalists, kilimnik was in charge of the office of Manafort in Kiev since 2005 and 2015, is a citizen of the Russian Federation and Ukraine, and in the past was a military translator.

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Prosecutors allege that a Russian partner of Manafort's, Konstantin Kilimnik, helped him try to persuade witnesses to lie to the jury when Manafort's case comes to trial in Washington, D.C., this autumn. Gates has already pleaded guilty and is cooperating with Mueller's investigation. The dismissive nature of Manafort's response is maintained throughout the response.

In Friday's indictment, Mueller accused Kilimnik of taking part in the covert lobbying scheme, and in trying to influence potential witnesses.

Mr Manafort's lawyers had been given a deadline of Friday to respond to the charges of witness tampering. "You don't really care about Mr. Manafort's bank fraud". The previously pending charges against Manafort of course had nothing to do with the synthetic collusion hyseteria over the 2016 election.

What has the White House said?

"They haven't been convicted of anything", Trump said, telling the media that he hasn't given any thought to the notion. In one note, Manafort asked Kilimnik to offer Deripaska "private briefings" about the campaign.

Bradford Betz is an editor for Fox News.

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