By Robert Donachie
Former Donald Trump presidential campaign chairman and chief strategist Paul Manafort and his business partner Rick Gates used millions in laundered money to pay for personal expenses, such as mortgages, children’s school tuition, and lavish decorations for their homes.
Manafort and Gates were instructed to turn themselves into federal authorities Monday morning, marking the first charges in the ongoing investigation into Russian influence in the 2016 presidential election. The pair has turned themselves into authorities, indicted in a federal court on 12 counts, including conspiracy to launder money, conspiracy against the United States, and knowingly making false and misleading statements.
“Like Manafort, Gates used money from these offshore accounts to pay for his personal expenses, including his mortgage, children’s tuition, and interior decorating of his Virginia residence,” the court case states.
The court documents claim more than “$75,000,000 flowed through the offshore accounts,” and that Manafort “laundered more than $18,000,000, which was used by him to buy property, goods, and services in the United States, income that he concealed from the United States Treasury, the Department of Justice, and others.” The documents report that Gates “transferred more than $3,000,000 from the offshore accounts.”
Gates is a longtime associate of Manafort and serves as his junior partner at his firm.
Gates became a point of interest in Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation after investigators found Gates name on documents linking Manafort’s firm to offshore companies that received payments from Eastern European politicians and businessmen.
Manafort’s indictment comes after a federal grand jury approved the first criminal charges Saturday in Mueller’s investigation into Trump campaign affiliates.