Special counsel Robert Mueller has filed a new indictment against US President Donald Trump's former campaign aides, Paul Manafort and Rick Gates
Special counsel Robert Mueller has filed a new indictment against US President Donald Trump’s former campaign aides, Paul Manafort and Rick Gates. The new indictment, filed on Thursday in US District Court in Alexandria, state of Virginia, includes new allegations of tax evasion and bank fraud against Manafort, former Trump campaign chief, and Gates, a former campaign aide, Xinhua news agency reported.
They were charged in October last year with money laundering, conspiracy and other offences in federal court in Washington. They pleaded not guilty to those charges, which were also filed by Mueller. The new indictment comes a week after Mueller sought charges against 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities, accusing them of interfering in the 2016 US presidential elections.
According to the 32-count indictment, prosecutors alleged that Manafort and Gates laundered $30 million, failed to pay taxes for nearly 10 years and used their real estate to fraudulently secure over $20 million. But neither the October indictment, nor the additional charges, include allegations of collusion with Russia as part of the Trump campaign.
Analysts say that Thursday’s indictment is part of Mueller’s effort to step up pressure on Manafort and Gates to cooperate with the collusion case as they prepare for trial later this year. Trump has repeatedly denied allegations of collusion between his campaign and Russians while describing the Russia probe as a “hoax” or a “witch hunt.”