Manafort pleads guilty, will cooperate with special counsel

Former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort arrives at the E. Barrett Prettyman U.S. Courthouse for a hearing

Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz on Friday said former Trump campaign chairman Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortManafort reaches "tentative" plea deal with Mueller: report Giuliani says possible Manafort plea deal not a concern Manafort seeks plea deal without special counsel cooperation: report MORE's guilty plea earlier that day was a "big win" for special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russian Federation probe MORE in his investigation. In Washington, Judge Amy Berman Jackson said that based on the guidelines, which are determined based on factors such as Manafort's involvement and the nature of the crimes, he faces a range of 210 to 262 months and a $400,000 fine.

On Friday (Saturday NZT), prosecutor Andrew Weissman said in court that Manafort had struck a "cooperation agreement" and would plead guilty to charges related to his Ukrainian political consulting work.

Jury selection was due to begin on Monday in a second Manafort trial on charges including conspiring to launder money, conspiring to defraud the U.S., failing to register as a foreign agent and witness tampering.

Last month, Paul Manafort was found guilty on eight of eighteen counts of fraud by a jury in the Eastern District of Virginia.

In 2010, the year Yanukovych was elected president of Ukraine, he ran against Tymoshenko-and part of Manafort's anti-Tymoshenko work, according to the charging document, included undermining Tymoshenko in the U.S.by painting her as anti-Semitic and having a neo-Nazi connection.

He led the campaign in mid-2016 when Trump was selected as the Republican presidential nominee at the party convention.

The special counsel's office added a second potential cooperator against Manafort in late August when another lobbyist for the Ukrainians, Sam Patten, pleaded guilty to a foreign lobbying charge.

Manafort appeared at the hearing with three attorneys, including Kevin Downing, who said nothing during the hearing.

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Depending on what information Manafort offers, his cooperation could also bring Trump or his family and associates into clearer focus in an investigation that has cast a shadow over the presidency and which Trump derides as a "witch hunt".

As with the Virginia case, the trial in Washington focused on criminal charges that largely predated Manafort's time with Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.

The deal will short-circuit Manafort's trial scheduled for later this month. He also made sure to point out that the case was about conduct that goes back many years.

Manafort pleaded guilty to conspiracy against the United States and conspiracy to obstruct justice.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders released this statement on Manafort. "It shows you've admitted your guilt", he said before the deal was announced.

According to Politico, the deal calls for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, to be served concurrently with a sentence in a separate Virginia case. Gates testified against Manafort in the Virginia trial, saying his former boss had directed him to commit the fraud.

"I had hoped and expected my business colleague would have had the strength to continue the battle to prove our innocence", Manafort said in February. The jury was deadlocked on the remaining 10 counts, which ended in mistrial.

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