Paul Manafort Verdict: Ex-Trump Campaign Chairman Found Guilty Of 8 Charges; Mistrial Declared For 10 Counts
On Tuesday afternoon, Paul Manafort was found guilty of eight counts of bank and tax fraud by a jury in Alexandria, Virginia.
The verdict of the trial of President Donald Trump‘s former campaign chairman provided a qualified victory for special counsel Robert Mueller, whose team had accused Manafort and his associates of lying to federal investigators about his financial activities. Tuesday marked the fourth day of deliberations in the more than two-week-long trial that saw former Trump aide Rick Gates testify against Manafort, his former mentor and business associate. Gates, the star witness in the case, admitted that he and Manafort hid millions of dollars they earned while working as lobbyists for pro-Russia political candidates and organizations in Ukraine, including former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych. Gates was also charged in the case.
According to the New York Times, “Manafort was convicted of two counts of bank fraud, five counts of tax fraud and one count of failure to disclose a foreign bank account.” Jurors were unable to make a decision on 10 of the 18 charges against Trump’s former campaign manager, so the judge declared a mistrial on those counts.
The development came on the same day Trump’s longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen reached a plea deal related to his payments in hush money to the president’s alleged mistresses. Cohen surrendered to the FBI in New York.
The charges Manafort was found guilty of are not related to work he performed during his brief time as a member of Trump’s campaign in 2016. Last week, Trump praised Manafort, calling him a “very good person” and adding that his trial was a “very sad” affair for the country.
Manafort was accused of hidding more than $60 million in earnings in 31 foreign bank accounts, and misreported income as loans in order to evade taxes, according to witness accounts. Manafort reportedly obtained up to $20 million in loans. Trump’s former campaign chairman then went on to spend lavishly on personal goods like suits and a $15,000 ostrich-skin jacket that drew much attention over the course of the trial.
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