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Gates Testifies He Helped Manafort Fudge Info To Obtain Loans

08 August 2018

"I don't think it's appropriate to not explain to the jury why these people are paying Mr. Manafort", Andres said. Gates was Manafort's partner in the consultancy.

"In Cyprus, they were documented as loans".

Gates, 46, is already facing up to six years in prison under the terms of a plea deal he struck with prosecutors in February when he pleaded guilty to two charges of conspiracy and lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

It's important to note that some of the alleged bank fraud did occur while Manafort was running the Trump campaign.

Under questioning from prosecutors, Gates read off the names of more than a dozen shell companies he and Manafort set up in Cyprus, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and the United Kingdom to stash the proceeds of Ukrainian political consulting work.

Gates, who pleaded guilty to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and conspiracy in February, was originally charged as a co-conspirator in the case.

Manafort's defense team aimed to discredit Gates as a liar and an embezzler who falsified Manafort's finances while trying to cover up his own crimes.

Manafort's defence attorneys have sought to paint Gates as an embezzler, liar and the instigator of any criminal conduct.

Manafort served as chairman of Trump's presidential campaign during the summer of 2016, and was forced out in August of that year amid news stories about his ties to then-Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

Gates will resume his testimony around 1:30 p.m. ET when the jury returns from lunch recess. The usually bearded Gates appeared in court clean-shaven on Monday.

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On Monday, Judge T.S. Ellis repeatedly clashed with prosecutors about the relevance of such testimony and once again urged them to speed things along.

Kevin Downing, an attorney for Manafort, accused Gates of having a "separate, secret life" with his lover in London and of using business expenses to pay for the affair, including an apartment in London.

Prosecutors will turn to Gates for first-hand support of their accusations that Manafort concealed millions of dollars in foreign income and later lied when he applied for bank loans.

Speaking at a rapid clip, Gates told jurors he stole from Manafort even as he told lies to bookkeepers and accountants so that his boss could hide most of his offshore earnings, estimated by prosecutors as more than $60 million from 2010 to 2014. But Gates pleaded guilty months later and agreed to co-operate in Mueller's investigation of Manafort, the only American charged by the special counsel to opt for trial instead of a guilty plea.

Gates said an associate, Konstantin Klimnik, had control over the overseas accounts.

He said Manafort asked for tickets to Trump's inauguration so he could give them to a banker involved in approving a loan at the centre of his financial fraud trial.

Testimony from Mr Manafort's tax preparer continued on Monday.

Gates also testified that he helped Manafort provide old documents to Citizen's Bank in order to hide the fact that Manafort had a mortgage on his Brooklyn property.

Manafort has a second trial scheduled for September involving allegations that he acted as an unregistered foreign agent for Ukrainian interests and made false statements to the USA government.

Gates Testifies He Helped Manafort Fudge Info To Obtain Loans