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Volly’s Grant Moon on challenges facing veterans

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Former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort found guilty of tax, bank fraud

Jury finds Manafort guilty on 8 counts, judge declares mistrial on other 10

A federal court jury in Alexandria, Virginia, just found President Donald Trump's former campaign chair Paul Manafort guilty on eight criminal charges. 

Manafort was found guilty Tuesday on five counts of tax fraud, two counts of bank fraud and one count of failing to file foreign bank account reports.

The jury returned guilty verdicts on charges pertaining to filing false tax returns from 2010 through 2014 and not filing a form to report a foreign bank account in 2012. The bank fraud convictions are related to a $3.4 million loan from Citizens Bank and a $1 million loan from Banc of California.

The jury deadlocked on three counts of not filing a form to report a foreign bank account and seven counts of committing bank fraud or conspiring to commit bank fraud, including the charges surrounding loans from The Federal Savings Bank

The jury, which was deliberating 18 total charges over the past four days, was unable to reach a consensus on 10 of the 18 counts Manafort faced. Judge T.S. Ellis declared a mistrial on those counts. Ellis announced that prosecutors have until Aug. 29 to decide whether or not to pursue retrying Manafort on the 10 deadlocked charges. A sentencing date has not been announced. 

Last year, Manafort was charged with laundering millions of dollars in foreign money through U.S. real estate among many other charges relating to his work for foreign governments. Special counsel Robert Mueller accused Manafort of committing a “series of false and fraudulent representations” to obtain a $9+ million mortgage from The Federal Savings Bank, a privately held bank in Chicago that focuses on mortgage lending. 

CNBC reports that President Trump responded to the news of the verdict by saying "This has nothing to do with Russian collusion."

Mueller’s team previously detailed how Manafort worked with an aide, Richard Gates, to misrepresent the nature of his income and the planned usage of the properties to obtain millions of dollars in mortgages. Gates pleaded guilty and cooperated with prosecutors, testifying in Manafort's trial.  Additionally, two employees from The Federal Savings Bank were granted immunity to testify in the trial. 

Manafort and Gates faced nine separate bank fraud charges relating to alleged misrepresentations made to several different lenders in order to defraud the financial institutions of $20 million. 

According to the indictment, between approximately 2015 and at least January 2017, “Manafort, with the assistance of Gates, extracted money from Manafort’s United States real estate by, among other things, using those properties as collateral to obtain loans from multiple financial institutions. Manafort and Gates fraudulently secured more than twenty million dollars in loans by falsely inflating Manafort’s and his company’s income and by failing to disclose existing debt in order to qualify for the loans.”

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