Longtime Manafort deputy Rick Gates admits embezzlement

Rick Gates leaves federal court in Washington. Paul Manafort’s trial opened this week with a display of his opulent lifestyle and testimony about what prosecutors say were years of financial deception. But the

Rick Gates Set to Testify Against Ex-Boss Paul Manafort

Rick Gates, who served on Trump's campaign and on his inaugural committee, testified against Paul Manafort, who was campaign chairman.

Gates, who is cooperating with prosecutors in the trial of Trump's former campaign chairman, testified that Manafort directed him to report overseas income as loans in order to lower his taxable income.

Rick Gates has been regarded as a crucial government witness ever since he pleaded guilty past year and agreed to cooperate in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

In addition to assisting in Manafort's alleged crimes, Gates told the jury he had failed to report his own income routed through bank accounts in the United Kingdom and stole several hundreds of thousands of dollars from Manafort by filing false and inflated expense reports related to their work in Ukraine.

Though he was in court to testify against Manafort, Gates offered praise of Manafort's consulting abilities, which he said brought ex-President Viktor Yanukovych "back from the proverbial political dead".

Downing also attempted to show that Gates was the point person in dealing with the accountants.

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Prosecutors will turn to Gates for firsthand support of their accusations that Manafort concealed millions of dollars in foreign income and later lied when he applied for bank loans.

Prosecutors allege he dodged taxes on millions of dollars he made from his work for a Russia-friendly Ukrainian political party.

But Manafort's defense team is expected to use Gates, too.

Gates also testified he and Manafort knew it was a crime because they had been notified by Manafort's accountants in emails.

Mr Manafort's attorneys signalled they would seek to blame Mr Gates and had accused him of embezzling millions of dollars from Mr Manafort.

According to multiple news outlets, Gates was asked on Monday if he was involved in criminal activity when working with Manafort.

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Gates also reportedly told the court on Monday that he had been told by Mr Manafort not to disclose foreign bank accounts. When Robert Mueller began investigating Russian interference previous year, Manafort's questionable lobbying work - the sort of activity that has historically rarely been investigated in Washington - was put under a microscope, exposing him and his associates.

Ms Laporta, looking at a summary of loans to Mr Manafort and his businesses, said she could not see any indication the loan from Mr Deripaska had been paid off.

The trial opened last week with a display of Manafort's opulent lifestyle, then progressed into testimony about what prosecutors say were years of financial deception. She said no, explaining a technicality, and leaving the possibility hanging in the air that Manafort and his wife, who split ownership of DMP International, may not have needed to make the disclosures.

Gates testified that he and Manafort had 15 foreign accounts they did not report to the US government, and knew that was illegal.

Since the trial started before US District Judge T.S. Ellis last Tuesday, Mr Manafort's lawyers have kept their cross-examinations brief and at times refrained from attempting to rebut damaging testimony in detail. Gates said that Manafort "asked me not to include certain things in the deposition". Without smiling or pausing, he told the jury he had knowingly committed crimes "at Mr. Manafort's direction".

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