Rick Gates returns to witness stand to detail Manafort’s finances

Posted August 08, 2018

Manafort joined the Trump campaign on March 26, 2016, as the campaign's GOP convention manager.

Gates admitted that at Manafort's behest, they later created a loan agreement for Lyovochkin's payment, though no loan existed.

Gates said he repeatedly lied to hide the bank accounts and, at Manafort's direction, would classify money that came in as either a loan or income to reduce Manafort's tax burden. The defense signaled in opening arguments that they'll try to pin the tax and bank fraud crimes at issue in this case on him. Separately, Manafort's former accountant who testified against him in exchange for immunity was sacked by her firm.

Gates is the 15th witness the government has called to testify in the trial through the halfway point of the sixth day.

Rick Gates left federal court, February 23, in Washington.

Last week, another Manafort attorney, Thomas Zehnle, depicted Gates as a liar who embezzled millions of dollars while going behind his boss's back.

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He has also sought to blame Mr Gates for the crimes.

The President is watching proceedings carefully as Mueller appears to be moving closer to his inner circle on multiple fronts and has complained that Manafort has been treated like a mobster - even as the White House has tried to open up some distance between Trump and his former campaign chairman.

Gates is scheduled to testify further on Tuesday.

Prosecutors have accused Manafort and Gates of conspiring to hide a significant portion of the $60 million that Manafort earned through his political lobbying in the Ukraine for its then-President Viktor Yanukovych.

Gates told the jury he revealed several other crimes as part of his plea deal, including embezzling from Manafort and other employers, which were previously unknown and not included in the federal indictments against he and Manafort.

After that, Gates sent her a document dated March 6, 2014, that purported to represent a $900,000 loan from a Cyprus entity, Telmar Limited, to Manafort's company.

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"At Mr. Manafort's request we did not disclose foreign bank accounts", Gates told the jury in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia, describing their relationship of two decades as limited to business. But Gates pleaded guilty months later and agreed to co-operate in Mueller's investigation of Manafort, the only American charged by the special counsel to opt for trial instead of a guilty plea. Previous evidence has indicated that Peranova, a company Gates said Manafort controlled, never loaned Manafort money.

Politico describes "a series of prickly clashes" between the prosecutor, Greg Andres, and U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III during testimony by Manafort's former deputy, Rick Gates.

Andres will continue questioning Gates for roughly an hour Tuesday before the defense gets a chance to cross-examine him.

He said Manafort asked for tickets to Trump's inauguration so he could give them to a banker involved in approving a loan at the centre of his financial fraud trial.

One accounting trick saved Mr Manafort $US500,000 ($676,907) in taxes, she said.

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