Published: Sun, January 13, 2019
World News | By Sandy Lane

Mueller Met With Trump's Campaign Pollster, a Former Manafort Associate

Mueller Met With Trump's Campaign Pollster, a Former Manafort Associate

Manafort's defense team was responding to Mueller's accusations that he lied to the special counsel's investigators about his contacts with Russians during the campaign after pleading guilty previous year.

Manafort was among the first Americans charged in Mueller's investigation and has been among the central characters in the case, having led the campaign during the Republican convention and as, U.S intelligence officials say, Russian Federation was working to sway the election in Trump's favor.

The defense filing was aimed at rebutting allegations that Manafort intentionally lied to Mueller's team after agreeing to plead guilty last September.

Jackie Speier, a Democratic member of the House Intelligence Committee, said the revelations raised new questions about possible "collusion" between Trump's election team and Russian Federation. However, Manafort wrote in one August 2016 email to his accountant that he expected a payment of $2.4 million in November 2016 for work he did in Ukraine, according to trial documents.

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The Manafort attorneys told the judge that their client's missteps came at a time when he'd been held for months in solitary confinement in an Alexandria, Va., jail, a stay that they said had "taken a toll on his physical and mental health" and led to "depression and anxiety".

Kilimnik worked with Manafort's consulting firm when he was representing pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine.

"No, I didn't know anything about it", he told reporters at the White House. The U.S. and European Union have imposed sanctions on Russian Federation over that move as well as the country's support for separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine.

CNN reported Wednesday that Manafort intended for Kilimnik to give the polls to Akhmetov and another Ukrainian oligarch. But Akhmetov's denial leaves open the possibility that the campaign data made its way to others in Ukraine or Russian Federation.

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Manafort earned millions from his Ukrainian political work over several years, which included wire transfers from Akhmetov and Lyovochkin through offshore bank accounts, prosecutors said at trial.

In addition to the polling data revelation, the filing also showed that Mueller believes Manafort lied to prosecutors about his discussions with Kilimnik about a "Ukrainian peace plan" and a previously undisclosed meeting between Manafort and Kilimnik in Madrid.

Manafort is scheduled to be sentenced February 8 by U.S. District Court Judge T.S. Ellis III in Northern Virginia for his conviction on eight felony counts of bank and tax fraud.

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