Paul Manafort allegedly lied to prosecutors about his communications with officials in the Trump administration, "information pertinent to another Department of Justice investigation" and more, the government said in a court filing on Friday.
Manafort met with prosecutors 12 times and testified twice before a grand jury, the Justice Department said.
During that time, prosecutors say Manafort didn't tell the truth about key topics even though he'd agreed to cooperate with the government in any way it wanted as part of his guilty plea.
The office of special counsel Robert Mueller included the details in a document filed with a federal judge that argues Manafort has violated that plea agreement.
Manafort's statements "were not instances of mere memory lapses," prosecutors wrote. "If the defendant contends the government has not acted in good faith, the government is able to prove the false statements at a hearing."
Manafort's attorneys said in an earlier court filing that he has given the government useful information. Manafort is scheduled to be sentenced on March 5 of next year.
The alleged false statements
Prosecutors say Manafort made false statements about five major areas. They were his associate Konstantin Kilimnik, with whom he faced charged for alleged witness tampering; Kilimnik's role in that alleged crime; and a wire transfer to a company working for Manafort.
The fourth area is not spelled out — the government alludes only to "information pertinent to another Department of Justice investigation" — and the fifth involves Manafort's contacts with officials in the Trump administration.
The last area was the subject of a New York Times report following the court filing in which the Justice Department argued that Manafort had violated his plea deal.
The Times reported that even as Manafort had been cooperating with the special counsel's office, his attorney also had been briefing an attorney for Trump.
That arrangement, although unusual, evidently isn't illegal, and it enabled Trump's lawyers to get a sense about the operations of Mueller's team. The special counsel's office, for its part, now contends that Manafort's denials about contacting people in the administration was a false statement that voids his plea deal.
Mueller's office is investigating whether anyone in Trump's campaign conspired with the Russians who attacked the 2016 election. Manafort ran that campaign for part of the year and had many contacts with powerful Eastern Europeans as part of his earlier political consulting business.
There is so far no allegation, however, that Manafort or anyone else colluded with the Russians who attacked the election. Trump posted on Twitter on Friday, evidently responding to the evening's headlines, that he has been vindicated.
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