Paul Manafort, the former campaign manager for now-President Donald Trump, surrendered Monday to federal authorities after he was indicted last week on criminal charges that remain unknown.
Manafort and his former business associate, Rick Gates, surrendered to the FBI early Monday after a grand jury indicted them on Friday, according to the Washington Post. The indictment came as FBI special counsel Robert Mueller continues his investigation into Trump’s campaign and Russia.
The indictment against Manafort and Gates contains 12 counts:
- Conspiracy against the United States
- Conspiracy to launder money
- Unregistered agent of a foreign principal (in Ukraine, not Russia)
- False and misleading statements regarding the Foreign Agents Registration Act
- False statements
- Seven counts of failure to file reports of foreign bank and financial accounts
Manafort had been under investigation for violating tax laws, money laundering and failing to disclose foreign lobbying. The FBI executed a search warrant on Manafort’s Alexandria, Virginia, home in August.
Why is this significant?
Manafort and Gates are the first two Trump associates to face criminal prosecution as a result of Mueller’s investigation. Trump’s opponents have accused the Trump campaign of colluding with Russian officials last year to undermine the election. That has largely been the focus of Mueller’s investigation.
What is not clear is whether these charges have anything to do with Trump and his campaign. Given Manafort’s longtime dealing with Russian and Ukrainian officials, the charges appear to mostly come from criminal activity that proceeds Trump’s run for the White House (although the indictment also alleges that Manafort and Gates lied to investigators about their foreign lobbying activities in late 2016 after Manafort left the Trump campaign).
The indictment does not appear to allege any criminal activity that is connected with Manafort’s activities on the Trump campaign at all.
BuzzFeed reported over the weekend that a series of “suspicious” wire transfers from 2012-2013 were likely a part of the Manafort indictment.
Watch Manafort turn himself in:
Manafort just walked into the FBI field office in D.C., using the front door (via CNN). https://t.co/n8TOn7j8wF
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) October 30, 2017