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New "superseding" criminal information was released this morning as part of a plea agreement reached between Manafort, Donald Trump's former campaign chairman who faced charges for lobbying law violations, and Mueller, the special prosecutor investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Speaking at the hearing before U.S. District Court judge Amy Berman Jackson, Weissmann said the 17-page plea document included the terms of Manafort's expected cooperation.

On Friday (Saturday NZT), prosecutor Andrew Weissman said in court that Manafort had struck a "cooperation agreement" and would plead guilty to charges related to his Ukrainian political consulting work.

He is still facing second set of criminal charges in a D.C. federal court for failing to register his foreign lobbying and money laundering charges. Manafort, President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, was convicted in August of eight charges of tax evasion and bank fraud for concealing the money he had made from pro-Russian interests in Ukraine (including its former President Viktor Yanukovych).

"He wanted to make sure that his family was able to remain safe and live a good life".

"This had absolutely nothing to do with the President or his victorious 2016 Presidential campaign", she said, according to pool reports.

The president's former personal lawyer has separately pleaded guilty in NY.

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Trump has sought advice from his attorneys on the possibility of pardoning Manafort and other aides accused of crimes, his attorney Rudy Giuliani previously told The Washington Post, and was counseled against pardoning anyone involved in the ongoing Mueller probe. In addition to the financial and lobbying charges against Manafort, the special counsel's team has said it's investigating allegations he colluded with Russian Federation while working for Trump.

Manafort had other charges dropped but he still looks likely to go to prison, marking a steep fall from grace for a multi-millionaire who was often at Trump's side as the Republican candidate took US politics by storm in 2016.

Rudy Giuliani, the former New York City mayor who is now representing Trump in the Russian Federation probe, told Reuters on Friday before the hearing that a guilty plea would not crush Manafort's chances of receiving an eventual presidential pardon.

Instead Manafort entered the plea. "This is for conduct that dates back many years and everybody should remember that". He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to obstruct justice against the United States and for money laundering, tax fraud, bank reporting and FARA foreign agent disclosure. We also asked Bill Thomas, another attorney and former federal prosecutor, about the effect of a possible pardon, and he said it wouldn't do anything to stop Manafort from testifying.

The Virginia case was the first brought by Mueller to go to trial, and the guilty finding by the jury - on eight of 18 charges - was a significant victory for Mueller's team.

He had other charges dropped but could still face 10 years in prison on the two charges in Washington.

Earlier this year, Manafort criticized his former business associate Rick Gates for cooperating with investigators, saying, "I had hoped and expected my business colleague would have had the strength to continue the battle to prove our innocence".


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