Ex-Trump campaign boss slams report on Ukraine ties

Manafort will be the second top Trump aide to retroactively register as a foreign agent.

On Wednesday, his spokesman, Jason Maloni, said he believes that Manafort's exclusive use of wire transfers for payment undermines descriptions of the ledger previous year by Ukrainian anti-corruption authorities and a lawmaker that said the ledger detailed cash payments.

Manafort's spokesman said he was in talks with the government about registering as a foreign agent before the 2016 election and is now "taking appropriate steps" in response to "formal guidance" from the government.

Manafort's ties to Russian Federation are part of probes underway by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and congressional intelligence committees into Moscow's interference in the 2016 presidential election, according to reports by the New York Times and other media. Manafort said through a spokesperson that he chose to file following "formal guidance" from federal authorities.

Manafort has, consequently, figured extremely prominently in various lines of speculation about ties between Trump and Russian Federation. But in a statement to the AP Manfort said that "any wire transactions received by my company are legitimate payments for political consulting work" and that these were paid "via wire transfer" rather than the cash payments suggested in the ledger.

Paul Manafort, campaign manager to Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump, is surrounded by reporters asking about the Republican National Convention Committee on Rules in Cleveland, Ohio, July 14.

While aspects of Manafort's finances are now under investigation, there is no indication that these loans are part of those inquiries.

The New York Times is reporting Manafort received $13 million in loans from two businesses with ties to President Donald Trump, including one with connections to Ukrainian-born billionaire and another led by a Trump economic adviser.

Maloni said that Manafort's lobbying work began before he joined the Trump campaign and was not conducted on behalf of the Russian government, reports the Associated Press (AP). Yanukovych now lives in exile in Russian Federation and is under investigation for corruption and for his alleged involvement in the killing of protesters in Kiev in early 2014.

Gates, who has been seen inside the White House on a number of occasions, helped plan Trump's inauguration and until last month was involved in a nonprofit organization, America First Policies, to back the White House agenda. But they have previously noted that they have no way of knowing whether Manafort received the money listed next to his name.

As the AP reported in August, the lobbying effort- which was funded by at least $2.2 million- included not only traditional outreach to politicians in Washington but attempts to influence American public opinion and gather political intelligence on competing lobbying efforts in the U.S. The details of the lobbying effort were detailed in emails obtained by the AP past year. The bureau said it is not investigating Manafort because he is not a Ukrainian citizen. The same day he resigned, The New York Times reports that papers show Manafort created the shell company Summerbreeze L.L.C. The source of the money for such investments still remain unclear, but if it's like any of Manafort's other recent business dealings, it's sure to bring fresh scandal down on his head.

"So, I finally did", he said.

  • Larry Hoffman