Feds claim evidence of bank fraud by Manafort: Court filing
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — A federal court has unsealed a filing against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort in which prosecutors with the special counsel’s office accuse Manafort of conducting “a series of bank frauds,” new, uncharged allegations that come on top of the conspiracy and money laundering charges he already faces.
The filing says the government has opposed a more lenient bail package for Manafort “in light of additional criminal conduct that we have learned since the Court’s initial bail determination,” and adds that the conduct in question “includes a series of bank frauds and bank fraud conspiracies.”
Manafort already faces a raft of charges in federal court, to which he has pleaded not guilty.
Most of those charges stem from work he conducted overseas for political work in Ukraine.
He is the most senior Trump campaign adviser to face charges as part of the special prosecutor’s investigation into meddling by Russia during the 2016 presidential campaign.
The charges he is facing don’t relate to his brief tenure at the helm of the Trump campaign.
The bank fraud allegations leveled in the new court filings have not been formally charged, at least not in public.
Instead, prosecutors elected to reference the claims of additional criminal conduct as part of an attempt to prevent Manafort from altering the terms of his $10 million bail arrangement.
Manafort and prosecutors have struggled for weeks to reach an agreement over which of his many real estate holdings would satisfy the court as collateral.
Manafort has been confined to his home in Alexandria, Virginia, since being indicted in October.
The filings made public Friday night made no mention of Manafort’s longtime colleague, Rick Gates, who was indicted at the same time. Both Manafort and Gates have pleaded not guilty to the charges in the underlying indictment.
A spokesman for the Manafort legal team did not respond to a request for comment late Friday.
The new allegations include an assertion that he doctored records in order to secure loans for one of the properties he owns.
“Manafort provided the bank with doctored profit and loss statements for [his company] DMP International LLC for both 2015 and 2016, overstating its income by millions of dollars,” prosecutors wrote.
“At the next bail hearing, we can proffer to the Court additional evidence related to this and the other bank frauds and conspiracies, which the Court may find relevant to the bail risk posed by Manafort as well as the risk that the banks may foreclose on the real estate being proposed by Manafort to secure his release.”
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