Filing open window into Mueller’s probe
WASHINGTON – The window into Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election interference could become clearer Friday with a simple convergence of the federal court calendar.
In Washington, prosecutors are due to file papers explaining last week’s collapse of a cooperation agreement with Paul Manafort, President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman. The filing is likely to outline what Mueller’s team characterized as Manafort’s repeated lies and additional “crimes,” leading to a breach of his plea agreement.
In New York, Mueller’s team is scheduled to file a sentencing memorandum for its newest cooperating witness – former Trump lawyer and “fixer” Michael Cohen.
Cohen pleaded guilty to a series of campaign finance law offenses as part of a plea agreement in August with federal prosecutors in New York. He reached a separate deal with Mueller’s team last week in which he pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about plans for a Trump Tower project in Moscow.
The sentencing documents will probably reveal the scope of Cohen’s cooperation in both cases, which has included allegations about Trump’s hush money payments to two women alleging extramarital affairs with him and the president’s efforts to conceal plans for a Moscow tower project even as Trump denied any Russian business interests during the 2016 campaign.