Things are looking bad for former Trump campaign head Paul Manafort, to say the least. Last fall, Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicted him on 12 counts, including conspiracy against the U.S. At the same time, Mueller indicted Manafort associate Rick Gates, but he’s since been reported to be working on some sort of plea deal that could conceivably involve him turning on his pal. Whatever the case, Manafort’s bail modification request was denied on Thursday, and here come more charges from Mueller.
Manafort and Gates have been indicted on new counts of tax and bank fraud that involve, among other things, failing to disclose income to the IRS. Not simply a few counts but 32 of them. The New York Times reports that the indictment-sequel reads a lot like the original list:
Many of the charges are similar to ones he was charged with in October. According to the new 32-count indictment unsealed Thursday, Mr. Manafort provided false information about his income to banks when he applied for mortgages. Seven of the counts relate to Mr. Manafort’s failure to properly file reports on his foreign bank accounts.
The indictment also revealed similar charges against Mr. Manafort’s longtime business associate and campaign deputy, Rick Gates. He was indicted along with Mr. Manafort in October.
None of these charges involve Manafort’s work on the Trump campaign, but it must be noted that this latest Mueller torpedo arrives days after Buzzfeed reported that investigators were digging into $40 million worth of “suspicious” (and mostly offshore) transactions traceable to Manafort. It sure looks like he’s not walking away from decades worth of prison time unless he cuts a deal. Still, it does seem odd that Gates reportedly had a plea in the works and was not spared of these new indictment counts, but the Daily Beast reports that Gates has fired his attorney, so perhaps Mueller was not truly extending an offer in his direction.
Meanwhile, former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn must be enjoying his own sweetheart deal of only pleading guilty to lying to the FBI, despite loads of allegations including lobbying for foreign governments.