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Six bombshells from Rick Gates' testimony in the Paul Manafort trial

Six bombshells from Rick Gates' testimony in the Paul Manafort trial

In testimony Tuesday, Gates laid responsibility squarely at Manafort's feet for a series of crimes, saying the two had committed crimes together by stashing money in foreign bank accounts and falsifying bank loan documents.

She identified Manafort as the person in control of the 31 foreign bank accounts.

Federal Bureau of Investigation forensic accountant Morgan Magionos used charts, emails from Manafort to his lawyers in Cyprus, and other corroborating documents to detail how Manafort funneled roughly $15 million from hidden offshore accounts to purchase home electronic installations, real estate, fancy clothing, such as the now-infamous $15,000 ostrich-skin jacket, and other luxuries from 2010 to 2014.

Manafort has pleaded not guilty to 18 counts of bank fraud, tax fraud and failing to disclose foreign bank accounts. He pleaded guilty to charges in February and is cooperating for the possibility of a reduced sentence.

On the seventh day of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort's criminal trial, the prosecution wasn't ready to rest.

Gates acknowledged that he did for two months and that he took first-class flights and stayed in "fancy hotels" around Europe, but said the money came from bonuses rather than illicit gains.

Defense lawyer Kevin Downing guided Gates on a tour through the wide array of lies he's told, and sought to paint him as a man not to be trusted.

Gates also admitted in the Eastern District of Virginia courtroom to an extramarital affair 10 years ago and keeping an apartment in London, saying he falsified hundreds of thousands of dollars in expense reports because "I was living beyond my means". Downing asked Gates Tuesday, a rhetorical question everyone present at the trial with any courtroom experience saw coming a mile away.

Numerous emails admitted into evidence Wednesday showed how Manafort personally directed wire transfers from such accounts.

Manafort's political work included advising Viktor Yanukovich on policy after he won the Ukrainian presidency, Gates said.

Manafort and Gates were the first two people indicted in Mueller's investigation into potential ties between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign.

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It called its plan a "50-state fuel economy and tailpipe carbon dioxide emissions standard for passenger cars and light trucks". In the years before California's extremely strict clean air rules, there were smog-filled skies that were fairly common.


"That's really beyond the pale for the judge", Litman said of the exchange, which took place during cross-examination, in front of the jury.

Regarding a trading company Manafort had started with a partner in 2011, he asked with deep scepticism: "You're asking the jury to believe Mr Manafort authorised another US$250,000 as a bonus?"

"I thought it was somewhere in the range of a hundred years, your honor", Gates said.

The jury was reminded of the universe of vendors who've testified - the high-end suit sellers, the landscaper, the friend-turned-real-estate-agent, the general contractor - as the Federal Bureau of Investigation and IRS representatives walked through money flowing into their legitimate businesses from Manafort's foreign accounts.

Cindy Laporta, a tax accountant for Manafort, testified Monday under immunity that she helped file falsified bank loan applications for him even though she knew they were inaccurate. Gates also said Manafort floated banker Stephen Calk's name for consideration as Secretary of the Army, a post he ultimately did not get.

Manafort's defence team's has tried to pin much of the blame for financial crimes on Gates and raise doubts about his ethics and morals.

A clothier said he sold Manafort more than $900,000 in suits.

In one email, Manafort wrote "WTF" and "not happy" about tax payments he was going to have to make, Gates said.

Gates served as a deputy for Manafort's political consulting business, and then as his deputy on the Trump campaign in 2016.

"I think the jury will hate (Gates), but they should still convict (Manafort) because of the testimony of other witnesses and the other documents that do put all of this on Manafort".


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