FBI in­ves­ti­gat­ing Paul Manafort for money laun­der­ing

New Straits Times - - World -


ARAID on the Vir­ginia home of Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s 2016 elec­tion cam­paign man­ager in­di­cates that in­ves­ti­ga­tions of pos­si­ble ties be­tween the cam­paign and Rus­sia are in­ten­si­fy­ing, be­ing fo­cused on the fi­nan­cial deal­ings of Trump as­so­ciates, sources fa­mil­iar with the probe said.

Long­time po­lit­i­cal con­sul­tant and lob­by­ist Paul Manafort is be­ing in­ves­ti­gated for pos­si­ble money laun­der­ing, and has been tar­geted as some­one who might tes­tify against for­mer col­leagues, said two peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the work of spe­cial coun­sel Robert Mueller.

Manafort’s spokesman, Ja­son Maloni, con­firmed on Wed­nes­day that the Fed­eral Bureau of In­ves­ti­ga­tion ex­e­cuted a search war­rant at one of Manafort’s homes.

“Mr Manafort has con­sis­tently co­op­er­ated with law en­force­ment and other se­ri­ous in­quiries and did so on this oc­ca­sion as well,” Maloni said in an email.

Manafort’s house in Alexan­dria, near Wash­ing­ton, was raided in the early morn­ing of July 26, the Wash­ing­ton Post re­ported. The pre­vi­ous day, Manafort had met Se­nate In­tel­li­gence Com­mit­tee staff, the Wash­ing­ton Post re­ported, cit­ing uniden­ti­fied peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the probe.

Tax doc­u­ments and fi­nan­cial records were sought by agents for Mueller in the raid, the New York Times re­ported, cit­ing a per­son fa­mil­iar with the mat­ter.

Mueller’s team is por­ing over Manafort’s fi­nan­cial and real es­tate records in New York and his in­volve­ment in Ukrainian pol­i­tics, the two sources said last month.

Demo­cratic Se­na­tor Richard Blu­men­thal called the raid a “highly sig­nif­i­cant step” and said it was “typ­i­cal of the most se­ri­ous crim­i­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tions deal­ing with un­co­op­er­a­tive or un­trusted po­ten­tial tar­gets”.

Trump has been at­tack­ing Blu­men­thal on Twit­ter this week af­ter the se­na­tor urged Mueller to press his in­quiry for­ward.

United States in­tel­li­gence agen­cies have con­cluded that Rus­sia in­ter­fered in the pres­i­den­tial race, in part by hack­ing and re­leas­ing emails em­bar­rass­ing to Trump’s op­po­nent, Demo­crat A dou­ble-decker bus crashed into a build­ing in Lon­don, po­lice said yes­ter­day, in­jur­ing a num­ber of peo­ple and trap­ping two pas­sen­gers in­side, who were later freed by fire­fight­ers. The ac­ci­dent hap­pened on Laven­der Hill, known for the 1951 Bri­tish com­edy film ‘The Laven­der Hill Mob’, star­ring Alec Guin­ness, Sid James and a young Au­drey Hep­burn. REUTERS PIC Hil­lary Clin­ton, to help him get elected in Novem­ber.

Trump has called Mueller’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion a “witch hunt”. Al­le­ga­tions of col­lu­sion be­tween Trump as­so­ciates and Moscow have hounded the Repub­li­can pres­i­dent since he took of­fice in Jan­uary, pre­sent­ing a ma­jor dis­trac­tion from his pol­icy agenda.

Rus­sia has re­peat­edly de­nied med­dling in the US elec­tion.

The Man­hat­tan District At­tor­ney’s of­fice has been try­ing to track money that Manafort used to buy prop­er­ties in New York, and look­ing into mil­lions of dol­lars of loans later taken out on the prop­er­ties, ac­cord­ing to a per­son fa­mil­iar with the mat­ter.

The pros­e­cu­tor has is­sued a sub­poena to Fed­eral Sav­ings Bank, a small Chicago bank founded by a for­mer Trump cam­paign ad­viser, and is in­ter­ested in the loan pa­per­work, the per­son said. Reuters


Don­ald Trump giv­ing a thumbs up as his cam­paign man­ager Paul Manafort (cen­tre) and daugh­ter Ivanka look on at the Repub­li­can Na­tional Con­ven­tion in Cleve­land last year.

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