Published: Sat, January 12, 2019
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Didn't know about allegations Manafort shared polling

Didn't know about allegations Manafort shared polling

US President Donald Trump said on Thursday he did not know that his former 2016 presidential campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, allegedly shared polling data with a business partner who prosecutors say had ties to Russian intelligence.

Manafort, who ran the Trump campaign from March to August 2016, was convicted last August of eight counts of financial fraud in federal court in Virginia.

Mueller has been investigating Russia's meddling in that election, as well as possible coordination between the Kremlin and Trump campaign-related figures.

The lawyers also said they reserved the right to fight back if Mueller brought new charges surrounding the allegations that Manafort lied to prosecutors.

Manafort earned millions of dollars doing political consulting work for Ukraine and received multiple wire transfers from Lyovochkin and Akhmetov, special counsel Robert Mueller's team said during Manafort's trial last summer.

Some Trump critics touted the revelation as the strongest evidence to date of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian government.

CNN reported Wednesday evening that Serhiy Lyovochkin and Rinat Akhmetov were the intended viewers of the data Manafort showed to Konstantin Kilimnik, who has alleged ties to Russian military intelligence.

He said that agreement would be a "conspiracy", whether or not the Trump campaign actually got anything of value from the Russians.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a former Trump campaign aide told Reuters that he was unaware Manafort had shared data with Kilimnik and found the news "disturbing" and especially problematic because the data was provided to a foreign national. Manafort denied that he was trying to hide the meetings he had with Kilimnik, who has also been charged in Mueller's wide-ranging investigation, and instead had just forgotten about them until he'd been presented evidence to refresh his memory.

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