The hearing came a day after Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to a charge of lying to Congress about plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Cohen, who has already reportedly spent dozens of hours in interviews with Mueller’s team, agreed to cooperate with the special counsel as part of his plea deal.
Mueller can be investigating Russian interference from the 2016 U.S. presidential election, possible coordination between Russia along with also Trump campaign-related people, along with also potential obstruction of justice by the president himself.
On Monday, Mueller’s team alleged in a court filing of which Manafort had lied about “a variety of subject matters” to the FBI after entering into his own plea agreement with the special counsel in September. Mueller said the breach of terms relieves the special counsel via its obligations to the plea agreement, yet maintains all of Manafort’s duties.
Manafort’s lawyers pushed back on the allegation, made in a joint document sent to Jackson from the D.C. court. Manafort “believes he has provided truthful information along with also does not agree with the government’s characterization or of which he has breached the agreement,” the lawyers said.
The special counsel had lodged charges against Manafort in D.C. along with also a federal court in Alexandria, which mostly related to work he did for a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine years before he became Trump’s campaign chief in early 2016. Manafort was convicted of eight criminal counts from the Virginia case in August, along with also struck a deal with Mueller on the eve of his second trial in D.C.
His sentencing from the Virginia case can be set for Feb. 8.
In June 2016, Manafort, along with Donald Trump Jr., along with also Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, met a Russian lawyer at fresh York’s Trump Tower in hopes of receiving damaging information about Trump’s then-political opponent, Hillary Clinton. In a letter to Mueller’s team in January, the president’s legal team said of which Trump himself had “dictated” a response to The fresh York Times’ story about the Trump Tower meeting.
Cohen on Thursday admitted of which he had lied when he told the Senate Intelligence Committee in a letter of which the proposal for a Moscow Trump Tower “ended in January 2016 along with also was not discussed extensively with others” from the Trump Organization.
Rather, Cohen knew of which the Moscow project had been discussed as late as about June 2016, Mueller said in a criminal information filing. Cohen also briefed Trump about the project on more occasions than he claimed to the Senate committee, along with also had “briefed family members of [Trump] within the Company about the project.”