Paul Manafort pleads guilty, agrees to cooperate with Mueller’s team

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Manafort to plead guilty, in business with the special counsel

Paul Manafort is expected to guilty as part of a plea deal with the special counsel. He faces seven counts of foreign lobbying violations and witness tampering in Federal court.

The former trump-campaign-Chairman Paul Manafort pleaded guilty in Federal court includes on Friday as part of a plea agreement to avoid the cooperation with Special Counsel Robert Müller, and allowed him, was a second attempt.

“I plead guilty,” Manafort, 69, told U.S. district judge Amy Berman in Washington.

Prosecutor Andrew Weissmann told the judge that Manafort includes the offer of a cooperation with the Prosecutor’s office, which investigated whether all of the trump employees played a role in Russia’s interference in the election of 2016. Interviews with prosecutors and testified before the court.

A lawyer for Manafort Fox News said the offer includes “full cooperation”.

But the president’s team played down asked the meaning of the Manafort.

“Once again, an investigation has concluded with a plea that the said nothing to do with President trump or trump campaign,” Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani in a statement to Fox News. “The reason is that the President has done nothing wrong.”

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said on Friday that Manafort is the decision is “completely independent” of the President.

Manafort, in a trial to start. Sept. 24, had seven counts of foreign lobbying violations and witness tampering in Federal court in Washington.

In August, in a separate process in Virginia, a Federal jury Manafort found guilty on eight counts of Federal tax and banking crimes.

Manafort faces up to 10 years on these charges in Washington. He was still prior to sentencing for his guilty verdict in Virginia.

As part of this agreement, Manafort, several bank accounts and several properties in New York has lost. But he holds on to his properties in Florida and Virginia, where his family lives.

I feel very bad for Paul Manafort and his wonderful family. “Justice” has a 12-year-old tax case, among other things, applied enormous pressure on him, and in contrast to Michael Cohen, he refused to “break” stories to a “deal.” Respect for a brave man!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 22, 2018

Manafort attorney Kevin Downing told reporters after the court hearing, it was a “tough day” for his client, “who has taken responsibility.” He said that Manafort “wanted to make sure that his family was able to stay safe and lead a good life.”

The case team probing potential crimes in connection with the election of 2016 was brought up by Mueller’s. But Manafort has not been charged with anything in connection with the campaign.

In August, Manafort bank and tax conviction of fraud made him the first campaign staff of a trump found guilty by a jury as part of the Müller-probe.

“I feel very bad for Paul Manafort” Trump told reporters after the August verdict, and added that it had “nothing to do with the Russian agreements.” The President has called, the Mueller’s probe a “witch hunt.”

Trump also said he has “such respect” for Manafort and called him a “courageous man.” In comments interpreted to mean that he was open to the pardon Manafort, Trump praised Manafort, who said he “refused to break” and “stories.”

In the Virginia trial, prosecutors said, Manafort, hid income from the policy work overseas, the IRS during the fraudulent and millions in the bank loan. Manafort, had pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The prosecution star witness, Rick Gates – Manafort, a former business partner who suggested to cooperate in a plea deal with the government — testified during the trial that he and Manafort required bank and tax fraud.

Downing, Manafort’s attorney, proposed, after the guilty verdict in August, Manafort was open, striking a deal before the second exam.

“He is the evaluation of all his possibilities at this point,” Downing the Manafort said.

Fox News’ Catherine Herridge, John Roberts and NuNu Japaridze contributed to this report.

Alex Pappas is a political reporter at Follow him on Twitter at @Alex Pappas.

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