Manafort Lawyer: 'So Many Lies' Gates Can't Keep Up

Adjust Comment Print

President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who is on trial on tax and bank fraud charges, had $16.5 million in unreported taxable business income between 2010 and 2014, a U.S. Internal Revenue Service agent testified on Wednesday.

Gates, 46, is expected to be cross-examined for about another hour by Manafort's attorney Kevin Downing before prosecutors get a second chance to try and undo some of the possibly damaging testimony he gave during their redirect.

According to Gates, Manafort, who had by then left the campaign, asked Gates in various ways to use his position on Trump's team to do favors for Stephen Calk, a banker who had loaned Manafort millions of dollars - loans that Mueller's team alleges were consummated under false pretenses. A bookkeeper said she helped disguise foreign income as a loan to reduce Manafort's tax burden.

Paul Manafort hid more than 30 offshore accounts in three types of currencies from the IRS, according to an Federal Bureau of Investigation forensic accountant testifying in the former Trump campaign chairman's trial.

The prosecution produced an undated email exchange between Mr Manafort and Mr Gates which outlines the amount of tax the campaign chief might have to pay.

Mr Gates pleaded guilty months later and agreed to co-operate in Mr Mueller's investigation of Mr Manafort, the only American charged by the special counsel to opt for trial instead of a guilty plea. Gates said that these loans were actually income.

On Wednesday, Downing sought to counter earlier testimony that Manafort had encouraged Gates to deceive authorities by getting Gates to acknowledge that Manafort told him to be truthful about offshore shell companies and bank accounts during a 2014 interview with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Gates, who is awaiting sentencing, told jurors that he embezzled hundreds of thousands of dollars from Manafort by filing false expense reports.

Prosecutor Greg Andres immediately objected and Downing did not return to the subject after a hushed consultation among the lawyers with Judge T.S. Ellis.

Blake Horstmann on Bachelorette 2018 Finale: What Happened
When asked on the live finale episode if he was still in love with Kufrin, Horstmann said that he will always have love for her. Then Garrett cries while talking with Becca's sister, Emily, and she immediately goes to tell Becca that she made Garrett cry.

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

Gates' earlier testimony on Tuesday, meanwhile, centered on how Ukrainian businessmen paid Manafort for his consultancy work. "I am here. I have accepted responsibility and I am trying to change".

Wednesday's drama comes after Gates spent large chunks of Monday and Tuesday on the stand detailing a long list of crimes he and Manafort committed, sometimes together, sometimes separately. He banned the word "oligarch" from the courtroom for being "pejorative" and complained last week about prosecutors' attempts to put Manafort on trial "for having a lavish lifestyle".

Gates replied that "I made many mistakes over many years" before stepping down from the witness stand.

In all, the pair of authoritative money trackers explained just how large Manafort's alleged foreign bank-account scheme was and how much he's accused of siphoning secretly into luxe purchases.

After saying Monday that he committed crimes with Manafort, including concealing offshore accounts to avoid reporting them to the US government at tax time and claiming false income to get loans, Manafort defense attorney Kevin Downing asked the witness, "This jury is just supposed to believe you after all the lies that you've told and the fraud you've committed?"

But the grilling got more intense, and personal, Tuesday afternoon when Downing pressed Gates about a "secret life" he said was funded by embezzlement, including an extramarital affair that Gates himself acknowledged.

After Yanukovych lost power in 2014, "I would say it decreased the income stream", Gates, wearing a blue suit, told the court matter-of-factly. However, the Manafort case - as President Donald Trump has been quick to point out - focuses on Manafort's business dealings and has no direct connection to Manafort's work with the Trump campaign.

For this Manafort was paid US$4million a year, in quarterly payments of US$1million, Gates recalled, though at some point the currency switched from USA dollars to Euros. Gates said he was responsible for collecting all relevant documents for the loan applications.

Comments