New indictment filed against Paul Manafort

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Yesterday, Renato Mariotti and I wrote about Special Counsel Robert Mueller's move to revoke Paul Manafort's bail or modify his conditions of release on the basis of evidence that he, along with "Person A", attempted to tamper with witnesses in Manafort's case.

They come after prosecutors accused Manafort of attempting to tamper with witnesses as he awaits trial of felony charges related to foreign lobbying work.

In court papers, the Federal Bureau of Investigation is alleging that at least one witness in the Manafort case was contacted by the former Trump aide and coached on what he should say about his lobbying practices.

The FBI has assessed that Kilimnik had ongoing ties to Russian intelligence, including during the 2016 presidential campaign when Manafort and his deputy, Rick Gates, were in contact with him, prosecutors have said in court filings.

In addition to the FARA charge, Manafort stands accused of tax fraud, bank fraud, and conspiracy against the United States.

According to the witnesses, Manafort and Kilimnik appeared to be pressuring them to say the Hapsburg group only worked in Europe, when they knew that they had been secretly paid to lobby in the U.S. Several of the politicians involved have denied any wrongdoing.

Perhaps more important is that an alleged line from the Russian government to the Trump campaign could be getting clearer. In a previous indictment, Mueller's team said Kilimnik-named as "Person A"-was a former officer of the Russia's military intelligence wing, the GRU".

Mr Kilimnik was a longtime employee of Mr Manafort's political-consulting firm, had done extensive lobbying work for him in Ukraine on behalf of the country's then pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovych.

It was the third time Mueller had added to charges against Manafort. "This made Kilimnik the primary interface for Manafort's lone client, a corrupt clique of former gangsters that ruled Ukraine under the banner of their political organization, the Party of Regions", Foer said.

Trump has repeatedly called the Mueller investigation a "witch hunt" and denied any collusion with Russian Federation.

The push to lock up Manafort could put additional pressure on him to cooperate with prosecutors. And then, in the wake of that, he's got to go and do something that's incredibly stupid, reach out to potential witnesses, knowing that he's being assessed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and try to persuade them to say he's not guilty.

The new indictment contains no allegations involving Kilimnik's alleged ties to Russian intelligence. His trial in Virginia is scheduled to begin in late July.

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