Trump's Campaign Chairman Flipped On Him And People Are Flipping Out

Former Donald Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort

Rudy Giuliani, the former New York City mayor who is now representing Trump in the Russian Federation probe, told Reuters on Friday that a guilty plea to avoid a second trial would not crush Manafort's chances of receiving an eventual presidential pardon. The plea agreement requires him to cooperate completely with the government, which includes giving interviews without his attorney present and testifying before any grand juries or at any trials.

In this file photo taken on June 21, 2017 former FBI Director Robert Mueller, special counsel on the Russian investigation, leaves following a meeting with members of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC.

In court on Friday, Manafort blew a kiss to his wife, Kathleen, before the hearing.

In total, Mueller has indicted or extracted guilty pleas from more than 30 people and three companies.

In-person jury selection for his Washington trial was set to start Monday, with opening statements scheduled for September 24 before U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson.

"One thing that we've seen is that the Mueller team only speaks through court filings and through court presentations-trial or oral arguments", Sandick said.

Another conviction would cap a dramatic fall for the global power broker and confidant of Republican presidents dating back to Ronald Reagan.

Manafort served for several months on the campaign, including as campaign chairman, until he was sacked in August 2016, amid revelations of the scope of his consulting and lobbying work for Ukrainian politicians, including then-President Viktor Yanukovych.

The details of the plea deal ― including whether it indicates that Manafort has to cooperate with Mueller's team ― are not yet available. Manafort also hid the millions of dollars he made from that work from the USA government and asked witnesses to lie to the jury in the trial he has now avoided.

Over a 40-year career, Manafort redefined and expanded Washington's influence industry domestically and internationally, parlaying successful campaigns into lobbying opportunities. Ukraine had said the report cost $12,000.

A jury in Eastern Virginia found the former political consulting titan guilty on eight counts related to tax evasion and loan fraud last month but remained hung on 10 other counts.

The superseding criminal information filed by Mueller's office Friday morning says Manafort acted as an unregistered foreign agent and engaged in money laundering, tax fraud, lying to the Justice Department and witness tampering.

Manafort was going to prison one way or another.

Manafort had other charges dropped but he could still go to prison, marking a steep fall from grace for a multi-millionaire who was often at Trump's side as the Republican candidate took USA politics by storm in 2016.

It's unclear how a guilty plea might alter his ultimate sentence, and some lawyers have questioned whether he is focused on winning a reprieve elsewhere. Manafort told the judge he wants to plead guilty. "What they are looking for is self-corroborating information that can be used against Trump... if they can make him sing and then there's the possibility of him composing, elaborating on the story". The president agreed to wait at least until the investigation concludes, Giuliani has said. Presidential personal counsel Rudy Guiliani hinted that unlike another "flipper", Michael Cohen, who Guiliani has called a "scumbag", Manafort continues to enjoy favored status in the White House. It shows that "Manafort has something of value to offer Mueller", tweeted former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti.

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Paul Manafort seated (L) as his lawyer speaks in court. He will also forfeit four homes and money in several bank accounts, according to the Times.

The tilt toward the special counsel in the plea agreement's language gives Manafort plenty of incentive to tell them everything he knows about the possible criminal dealings of other Trump campaign officials.

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