Manafort reported to cut plea deal with Mueller

Clay Curtis
September 15, 2018

Manafort, however, is resisting and his team is pushing prosecutors for a plea agreement that does not include cooperation, at least as related to the president, sources said. Negotiations have been underway between his lawyers and the office of Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller.

Jury selection is scheduled to begin on Monday in Manafort's second trial in federal court in Washington on charges including conspiring to launder money, conspiring to defraud the United States, failing to register as a foreign agent and witness tampering.

Manafort made a similar unsuccessful request in his bank fraud and tax evasion trial in northern Virginia.

"Manafort and his most senior defense attorneys spent more than four hours Thursday in discussions with a team of special prosecutors who are involved in the ongoing investigation into whether there was collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation", the report says.

Notes from former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort on a meeting he attended past year with a Russian lobbyist and Donald Trump Jr. are not seen as damaging to the Trump family or campaign officials, according to government officials and others who have looked at the notes...

Manafort has not yet entered a new plea before the judge and prosecutors have not yet revealed the terms of any deal reached with him.

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It was not clear if Manafort would be required to cooperate with Mueller's office.

Those charges are the subject of the current plea deal.

The trial would be the second for Manafort stemming from Mueller's sprawling investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Gates could be called as a prosecution witness in his Washington trial as well, as could veteran political operative Samuel Patten, who pleaded guilty to unregistered lobbying for Ukrainian politicians two weeks ago.

Jackson said she would allow Downing to file additional information about his argument before issuing a ruling, but was inclined to bar such references because they weren't relevant to the charges against Manafort.

Trump discussed a possible pardon for Manafort with his lawyers earlier this summer, attorney Rudy Giuliani has told NPR. In ruling against Manafort's request for a change of venue, Jackson said she could reconsider if they are unable to qualify enough jurors to proceed to jury selection in the case, scheduled to begin September 17.

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