Published: Tue, December 05, 2017
World | By Melba Underwood

Mueller: Manafort's Collaborator Has Ties To Russia's Intelligence Services

Mueller: Manafort's Collaborator Has Ties To Russia's Intelligence Services

In an attempt to burnish his public image and leave no fingerprints behind, Donald Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort recently enlisted a longtime Russian colleague to help him ghostwrite an op-ed.

"Manafort worked on the draft with a long-time Russian colleague of Manafort's, who is now based in Russia and assessed to have ties to a Russian intelligence service", he added, stressing that "even if the ghostwritten op-ed were entirely accurate, fair, and balanced" it would be a violation of the court's order to parties and counsel to "refrain from making statements to the media or in public settings that pose a substantial likelihood of material prejudice to this case".

According to the October indictment, reviewed by Fox News, between at least 2006 and 2015, Manafort and his associate, Rick Gates, acted as unregistered agents of the Government of Ukraine, the Party of Regions, a Ukrainian political party whose leader Victor Yanukovych was president from 2010 to 2014, and the Opposition Bloc, a separate party.

Manafort and Gates have pleaded not guilty. "The editorial clearly was undertaken to influence the public's opinion of defendant Manafort, or else there would be no reason to seek its publication". Prosecutors did not name Manfort's Kremlin connected colleague, but did note he is now in Russian Federation.

Although the contents of the editorial are not expected to be made public, the filing indicates that it focused on Manafort's political work in the Ukraine and specifies that the associate with whom Manafort was working "is now based in Russia and assessed to have ties to a Russian intelligence service".

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What you need to know about Paul Manafort's ties to Russian Federation.

Manafort led the Trump campaign for several months, including during the Republican National Convention. They met twice in person, in May 2016 and then again in August 2016, when their dinner conversation at New York's Grand Havana Room included discussion of the presidential campaign, Kilimnik told The Post this June. A Deripaska spokeswoman has said he was never offered such briefings. Manafort has denied any wrongdoing.

The filing continued: "Because Manafort has now taken actions that reflect an intention to violate or circumvent the court's existing orders. the government submits that the proposed bail package is insufficiently reasonable to assure his appearance as required".

Manafort relinquished his passport and was placed under house arrest; his bail was set at $10 million.

On Monday, the special counsel asked U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson either to reject the deal, keeping Manafort under home confinement pending further negotiations, or impose additional restrictions, including making the $10 million forfeitable for other breaches of the terms and requiring Manafort to remain under Global Positioning System monitoring.

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