FBI agents armed with a search warrant raided the home of Paul Manafort, President Trump’s former campaign chairman, Manafort’s spokesman said Wednesday.
Manafort’s spokesman Jason Maloni says that Manafort cooperated with the FBI agents as he has “consistently” done.
Manafort has been a subject of a longstanding FBI investigation into his dealings in Ukraine and work for that country’s former president, Viktor Yanukovych. Special Counsel Robert Mueller is also investigating Manafort as part of his probe into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election and any possible collusion with Trump associates.
Manafort has denied any wrongdoing. He has also cooperated with congressional committees investigating the election interference. Manafort has turned over documents to the intelligence and judiciary committees in the Senate. Manafort led the Trump campaign for several months.
The FBI search was first reported Wednesday by The Washington Post, which said it occurred July 26.
Armed with a search warrant, federal agents went to Manafort’s Alexandria home during the predawn hours of July 26 – one day after he met voluntarily with members of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
The search warrant seems to indicate that investigators may have had reason to believe Manafort could not be trusted to turn over all of the records requested in response to a grand jury subpoena, the Post reported, citing people familiar with the special counsel investigation.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller has cranked up the intensity and legal pressure on Manafort on a series of unrelated investigations into various aspects of his personal and professional life, the Post reported.
As a lobbyist and political consultant in the 1980s, Manafort worked with international clients including two dictators.
President Trump has tried to distance himself from Manafort, though the relationship between the two goes back years.
On March 29, 2016, the Trump campaign announced it brought the veteran political strategist on board to help then-candidate Trump secure enough delegates at the Republican National Convention in July.
Manafort resigned as Trump’s campaign manager in August 2016 amid questions regarding his business dealings in Ukraine.
The special counsel has taken over a criminal investigation into Manafort’s financial dealings, which began even before the 2016 election.
Manafort has been the subject of multiple investigations into his financial dealings and lobbying work. He has denied any colluding with Russia.
In June, Manafort officially registered as a foreign agent for the work he did with a Ukranian political party from 2012 to 2014.
So far, Trump’s presidential campaign, his son Donald Trump Jr. and Manafort have turned over 20,000 pages of documents to the Senate Judiciary Committee as part of the panel’s in-depth probe into election meddling by Moscow.
Committee spokesman George Hartmann said Manafort provided 400 pages on Aug. 2. Two days later, the president’s son handed over 250 pages. The committee had set an Aug. 2 deadline.
The committee asked for all records related to obtaining information on Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton from the Russian government or people related to is, including the June 2016 meeting between Manafort, Trump Jr., Trump advisor/son-in-law Jared Kushner and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya.
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