ALERT: Manafort and Gates Make Their Plea on Mueller Indictment

Paul Manafort, former campaign chairman to President Trump, was indicted Monday on 12 counts of criminal charges related to foreign payments that were hidden, one count which was “conspiracy against the United States.”

Rick Gates, whom is Manafort’s business partner and protege, was also charged in the indictment.

Both business men surrendered Monday morning to authorities, each pleading not guilty to all charges during their court appearance.

Via CNBC: A spokesman for Gates said the former lobbyist “welcomes the opportunity to confront these charges in court.” A Manafort spokesman declined to comment.

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In a statement, Special Counsel’s Office spokesman Peter Carr said the indictment “contains 12 counts: conspiracy against the United States, conspiracy to launder money, unregistered agent of a foreign [government], false and misleading [foreign lobbying disclosures], false statements, and seven counts of failure to file reports of foreign bank and financial accounts. The case was unsealed today after the defendants were permitted to surrender themselves to the custody of the FBI.”

Several law enforcement sources disclosed to NBC News a statute of limitations issue was in play with this case, that could have helped push the timing of the charges that were handed in Friday.

Following news of the indictments, a White House source told NBC News that the charges had not come as a surprise to the Trump administration. “The White House has been saying for weeks the special counsel is moving far more quickly and deliberatively than people have been reporting. The fact that the special counsel is actively performing its duties does not come as a surprise to the White House,” the source said.

 

 

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