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Paul Manafort Reaches Plea Deal With Special Counsel Robert Mueller

Paul Manafort Reaches Plea Deal With Special Counsel Robert Mueller

Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort will plead guilty in federal court Friday as part of a plea agreement with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, Fox News has learned.

In the trial scheduled in Washington, Manafort faces charges of conspiring against the United States, money laundering, failing to register as a lobbyist, making false statements and conspiring to obstruct justice by trying to influence witnesses.

In addition to the witness tampering counts, Manafort is formally charged with acting as an unregistered foreign agent, conspiring to launder money and lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Justice Department about the nature of his work.

Manafort is expected to appear in court later Friday morning.

As part of the deal, Manafort, 69, could be required to cooperate with Mueller's probe into Russia's role in the 2016 presidential election and whether Trump's campaign colluded with Russian Federation in the 2016 US presidential election.

Manafort's decision could be a blow to Trump, who last month praised his former aide for not entering into an agreement with prosecutors, as the president's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen had.

The move toward a guilty plea is another reversal for Manafort, who has fought vociferously - but unsuccessfully - against Mueller's probe.




Manafort, 69, was a key figure in Mr Trump's inner circle, but the president has since sought to distance himself from his former adviser.

The jury in the Virginia trial had found Manafort guilty on eight of the counts brought by Mueller, while dead-locking on 10 others.

Manafort's conviction in Alexandria, Virginia, last month was at a trial arising from Mueller's investigation.

The punishment that Manafort may receive related to his D.C. case, and any cooperation he may have offered the government, weren't immediately clear.

Manafort had denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty.

It remains unclear if the deal will include Manafort's cooperation with Mueller's probe, dealing a blow to Trump ahead of congressional elections on November 6.

In the Washington case, prosecutors were set to lay out in great detail Manafort's political consulting and lobbying work on behalf of former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and the pro-Russian Party of Regions. The discovery of his witness contacts led to a superseding indictment in June and Manafort's jailing ahead of his trial.


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