This is breaking news where there is very little being reported about the FBI’s lead investigator in the Trump-Russia probe, Special Counsel Robert Mueller III, having accused the republican Donald J. Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort of witness tampering.
This post will be updated as more information becomes available.
On June 4, 2018, Matt Apuzzo of the New York Times penned the following report, “Mueller Accuses Paul Manafort of Attempted Witness Tampering”
Federal prosecutors on Monday accused President Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, of attempting to tamper with witnesses in his federal tax and lobbying case.
In court documents, prosecutors working for the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, said that Mr. Manafort tried to contact witnesses by phone and through an encrypted messaging program.
Prosecutors said that was a violation of Mr. Manafort’s release while he awaits trial. They asked a federal judge to revise the terms of his release or revoke it entirely, which would send him to jail until trial.
An F.B.I. agent, Brock W. Domin, wrote in court documents that at least one witness reported Mr. Manafort’s contact and said that he appeared to be trying to coach their story about Mr. Manafort’s lobbying practices.
As per a June 4, 2018 Reuters staff report, “Manafort was released to home confinement after his arraignment in October (2017).
“Mueller has indicted Manafort in federal courts in Virginia and Washington, D.C., with an array of allegations from money-laundering and failing to register as a foreign agent, to bank and tax fraud. Manafort has pleaded not guilty.”
“FBI Special Agent Brock Domin, in a declaration filed with Mueller’s motion, said Manafort had attempted to call, text and send encrypted messages in February to two people from “The Hapsburg Group,” a firm he worked with to promote the interests of Ukraine.”
“The FBI has documents and statements from the two people, as well as telephone records and documents recovered through a search of Manafort’s iCloud account showing that Trump’s former campaign manager attempted communication while he was out on bail, according to Domin.
“The communications were “in an effort to influence their testimony and to otherwise conceal evidence,” Domin wrote. “The investigation into this matter is ongoing.”
“Manafort is the most senior member of Trump’s campaign to be indicted, though the charges do not relate to campaign activities.”
Mueller urged Judge Amy Berman Jackson to “promptly” schedule a hearing on the whether to change Manafort’s conditions of release, which could result in Manafort going to jail.”
“Trial is set to start on Sept. 17.”