As reported by Censor.NET citing The New York Times, the charges against Mr. Manafort and his longtime associate Rick Gates represent a significant escalation in a special counsel investigation that has cast a shadow over Mr. Trump's first year in office.
Separately, one of the early foreign policy advisers to Mr. Trump's presidential campaign, George Papadopoulos, pleaded guilty to lying to the F.B.I. about a contact with a Russian professor with ties to Kremlin officials, prosecutors said on Monday.
The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, was assigned in May to investigate whether anyone close to Mr. Trump participated in a Russian government effort to influence last year's presidential election. Monday's indictments indicate that Mr. Mueller has taken an expansive view of his mandate.
The indictment of Mr. Manafort and Mr. Gates makes no mention of Mr. Trump or election meddling. Instead, it describes in granular detail Mr. Manafort's lobbying work in Ukraine and what prosecutors said was a scheme to hide that money from tax collectors and the public. The authorities said Mr. Manafort laundered more than $18 million.
"Manafort used his hidden overseas wealth to enjoy a lavish lifestyle in the United States without paying taxes on that income," the indictment reads.
Mr. Gates is accused of transferring more than $3 million from offshore accounts. The two are also charged with making false statements.
"As part of the scheme, Manafort and Gates repeatedly provided false information to financial bookkeepers, tax accountants and legal counsel, among others," the indictment read.
Mr. Papadopoulos admitted that in a January interview with the F.B.I., he lied about his contacts with a Russian professor, whom he knew to have "substantial connections to Russian government officials," according to court documents. Mr. Papadopoulos told the authorities that the conversation occurred before he became an adviser to Mr. Trump's campaign. In fact, he met the professor days after joining the campaign.
On May 31, Petro Poroshenko Bloc MP Serhii Leshchenko and journalists Anton Marchuk and Sevhil Musaieva-Borovyk published some of the documents proving the existence of Party of Regions' slush funds. According to the materials, the Party of Regions spent $66 million on political corruption over the second half of 2012.
Even earlier, ex-Deputy Head of the Security Service of Ukraine Viktor Trepak said he had passed the information about Party of Regions' slush funds to the National Anti-Corruption Bureau.
NABU Director Artem Sytnyk confirmed the acceptance of 841 files related to the slush funds and covering the period between 2008-2012. Sytnyk announced the start of identification of all persons indicated in the documents, adding the NABU would take measures to prevent their possible escape from the country. He noted the involvants will be charged under the "offering of undue profit" article of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.
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