Rick Gates Says Paul Manafort Tried To Sell Army Secretary Position To Banker Stephen Calk
Rick Gates claimed at Paul Manafort‘s trial on Tuesday that his mentor recommended a banker to be named President Donald Trump‘s Army secretary.
Gates, a former Trump aide, told prosecutors in Virginia that Manafort floated Stephen Calk‘s — a Federal Savings Bank CEO who’s bank loaned Manafort money — name as a potential new Army secretary just weeks after the 2016 election, according to CNN.
“We need to discuss Steve Calk for Sec of Army,” Manafort wrote to Gates in an email from Nov. 24, 2016 that prosecutors allowed the jury to see. Then one month later, Manafort reportedly emailed business associate Gates again to express his desire for Calk and his son to attend Trump’s inauguration.
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The mortgage loan Calk offered Manfort in 2016 was based on false financial information. Calk is a former Army officer and helicopter pilot.
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Gates has already testified against Manafort, saying that he helped Trump’s former campaign chairman commit dozens of bank and tax fraud crimes over the last decade. The pair have been accused of performing work to support pro-Russia political candidates and organizations in Ukraine.
Manafort has pleaded not guilty to all charges of financial fraud and other charges he has drawn as part of special counsel Robert Mueller‘s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
On Wednesday, the Washington Post reported that an FBI accountant who tracked Manafort’s business dealings with Ukrainian political entities — from whom he received millions of dollars — took the witness stand. The forensic accountant reportedly explained how Trump’s former campaign chairman intentionally misreported his income to spend lavishly on personal goods and keep money in offshore bank accounts in Cyprus and Britain, among other locations. Manafort and Gates were both named beneficial owners of many of those accounts, the FBI employee said.
Gates also confessed to stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from Manafort.
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