Paul Manafort on Verge of Plea Deal to Avoid Trial on Fraud, Foreign Agent Charges
Paul Manafort, a one-time campaign manager of President Donald Trump, appears to be on the verge of a plea deal with federal prosecutors that would avoid a second trial slated to begin later this month, ABC News reports.
A hearing scheduled for the morning of Sept. 14 was shifted 90 minutes later, when the plea arrangement will be announced, sources told ABC. It is unclear whether it would involve Manafort’s cooperation with the FBI investigation into Russian influence on the 2016 presidential election led by special counsel Robert Mueller, or if Manafort would plead guilty to stated or lesser charges.
In a separate trial that ended in late August, jurors found Manafort guilty of 8 out of 18 charges for tax and bank fraud.
Manafort likely faces seven years in prison resulting from the previous convictions, based on federal sentencing guidelines, though he may still face additional jeopardy at state and federal levels. Manafort also faces financial pressure. The previous trial revealed the extent of his holdings and debt, and civil proceedings against him likely remain. His assets remain tied up due to the ongoing prosecution.