Robert Mueller charges attorney with lying to the FBI in Russian Federation investigation

21 February, 2018, 03:27 | Author: Gregory Stephens
  • Former Trump aide Rick Gates to plead guilty agrees to testify against Manafort sources say

Alex Van Der Zwaan - a Ukraine-connected attorney with ties to former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates - has pleaded guilty to a charge of making false statements to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, special counsel Robert Mueller's office announced Tuesday.

The office of Special Counsel Robert Mueller disclosed the accusations against attorney Alex Van Der Zwann on Tuesday, with the expectation that Van Der Zwann would plead guilty later in the day in a Washington court.

Prosecutors charged Alex van der Zwaan with making false statements to federal agents on Friday. It stems from a part of the special counsel's investigation into Paul Manafort, Trump's former campaign chair, and Rick Gates, a former campaign aide and longtime business associate of Manafort.

He lied when he said his last communication with Rick Gates was in August 2016, according to the government, when in fact in September 2016 "he spoke with both [Manafort deputy Rick] Gates and Person A" about a report and 'surreptitiously recorded the calls'.

Van der Zwaan is accused of lying during an interview with prosecutors and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents on November 3, 2017, about the timing of his last communication with Gates and an unidentified person described as "Person A".

According to the criminal information filed by special counsel Robert Mueller's office, which is dated February 16, investigators asked van der Zwaan in November about his work in 2012 for the Ukrainian Ministry of Justice preparing a report on the trial of Yulia Tymoshenko, the former Ukrainian prime minister.

Skadden was roped into the controversy when it emerged that the former Ukrainian Justice Minister Oleksandr Lavrynovych embezzled over $1 million to pay the law firm, which had been hired by Ukraine's president at the time, Viktor Yanukovych.

After being pressured by American and Ukrainian prosecutors, Skadden refunded about half the amount it was paid to the Ukrainian government. That work became a matter of interest for Mueller's team, the New York Times reported, due to their interest in studying Manafort's work for Yanukovych and for Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs.

Both Gates and Manafort were indicted past year on charges of conspiracy to launder money and acting as unregistered foreign agents. The two also failed to disclose lobbying work on behalf of then-Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych and then tried to hide that work as it came to light in August 2016, the USA said.

The charge against van der Zwaan does not involve election meddling or the Trump campaign's operations.

Yanukovych, a pro-Russian strongman from Ukraine's Party of Regions, hired Skadden to justify the proceedings against Tymoshenko - who was his political opponent - to the USA government.

The charge against Zwaan and reports that Gates may plead guilty suggest "that Mueller is putting even more pressure against Manafort, which is interesting because Manafort is already buried in an indictment with very serious charges", Mariotti said.

In a report a year ago, The Kyiv Post described Zwaan as "the Russian-speaking son-in-law of Russian oligarch German Khan". At the time, Gates was working with the Trump campaign.

It is not known if Mr Gates' cooperation led to Mr Van Der Zwaan's indictment.

Yanukovych was ousted from the presidency in 2014 amid widespread protests against his Russia-friendly positions and his decision to back out of a deal that would have promoted closer ties between Ukraine and the West and distanced Ukraine from Russian Federation.

Manafort was also one of three top Trump campaign officials who attended a June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with two Russian lobbyists who offered the campaign dirt on the Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

The White House has repeatedly rejected allegations of wrongdoing.

Manafort and Gates are accused of directing a covert Washington lobbying campaign on behalf of pro-Russian Ukrainian interests. Manafort is accused of laundering money to buy houses, cars, clothes and landscaping services. Both men have pleaded not guilty. "Prosecutors typically very methodically start with low level offenders and try to work their way up the chain", said Barbara McQuade, a former US attorney for the Eastern District of MI.

The Tymoshenko report was cited in the 12-count indictment against Manafort and Gates.


  • NBA All-Star Weekend 2018: Recapping the Celebrity All-Star game

    NBA All-Star Weekend 2018: Recapping the Celebrity All-Star game

    Watson said before the game that he got some grief from his fellow golfers about taking up a second sport while in contention. BIEBS IS BACK: Bieber will return to play in the celebrity game on Friday night after winning MVP honors in the 2011 game.
    Lloyds Walks Away from Standard Life Contract

    Lloyds Walks Away from Standard Life Contract

    Shares in Standard Life Aberdeen dropped as much as 10% for a time after the announcement, before settling about 5% lower. Standard Life Aberdeen presently has an average rating of "Buy" and a consensus target price of GBX 477.50 ($6.60).
    2 killed, 3 hurt in New Orleans shooting

    2 killed, 3 hurt in New Orleans shooting

    They watched the parades put on by Rex and Zulu as well as the truck parades that roll through the streets afterward. Police spokeswoman Ambria Washington said multiple suspects opened fire on a vehicle with five people inside.
  • Long-Term Use Of Cleaning Products Causes Lung Problems, Study Says

    Long-Term Use Of Cleaning Products Causes Lung Problems, Study Says

    A new study suggests household cleaning products might do as much damage to women's lungs as smoking cigarettes. But using cleaning products had no effect on men's lungs, research showed.
    Rodrigo Duterte faces backlash for alleged misogynist comments

    Rodrigo Duterte faces backlash for alleged misogynist comments

    It was not the first time Duterte's comments have angered women's groups as he joked several times about rape . Just laugh", he told a pro-Duterte social media personality, adding that people "identify with his humour".
    Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus Benchmarked With Android 8.0, 6GB RAM

    Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus Benchmarked With Android 8.0, 6GB RAM

    In terms of performance, you should note that the Snapdragon 845 processor is 25% faster compared to its predecessor. This year too the Galaxy S9 duo are expected to arrive in Exynos and Snapdragon SoC variants.
  • Fears grow of a Syria-Turkey conflict

    Fears grow of a Syria-Turkey conflict

    The YPG has officially denied that they have agreed to Syrian troops entering the region, according to Kurdish outlet Rudaw. Syrian state TV reported that rebels fired dozens of mortar rounds and rockets at Damascus, wounding eight people.
    National Hockey League  commissioner Bettman condemns 'reprehensible' Smith-Pelly abuse

    National Hockey League commissioner Bettman condemns 'reprehensible' Smith-Pelly abuse

    Devils 4, Lightning 3: Miles Wood's goal at 1:24 of the third period gave New Jersey a victory over Tampa Bay at Amalie Arena. Assistant captain Brooks Orpik said: "I wish I could say it's surprising but it's probably not all that surprising".
    Modi discusses bilateral cooperation, regional issues with Iranian President

    Modi discusses bilateral cooperation, regional issues with Iranian President

    We will get benefit if we buy from Iran. "For the longest of time, India and Iran have been learning from each other", Modi said. India committed up to $500 million for the development of Chabahar along with associated roads and rail lines.
  • Arvinder Singh Lovely returns to Congress

    Arvinder Singh Lovely returns to Congress

    Ten months on, " Lovely " returned to his parent party on Saturday, saying he felt like " misfit " in the BJP . Gandhi welcomed him into the party fold.
    McDonald's to remove cheeseburger from Happy Meal menu, offer smaller fries

    McDonald's to remove cheeseburger from Happy Meal menu, offer smaller fries

    By June 2018, all Happy Meals will contain fewer than 600 calories and have less than 650 milligrams of sodium. The company says it is working to improve the nutrition of its food for both kids and adults around the world.
    Canada win inaugural mixed doubles curling gold

    Canada win inaugural mixed doubles curling gold

    Although Russia is not officially competing in the Games in the wake of the nation's state-sponsored doping scandal ban . Anastasia Bryzgalova appearing on your Cornflakes box soon? Anastasia Bryzgalova '...why decline?'


Pogba an illness doubt for Sevilla tie
Where that leaves Pogba's future at Old Trafford is anyone's guess for the moment, although the Daily Star says he won't be offloaded to Real Madrid .

Apple fixes scary Telugu bug that crashes iPhones
The iOS version additionally mentions "Fixes an issue where some third-party apps could fail to connect to external accessories". On its website, updates are titled iOS 11.2.6, watchOS 4.2.3, tvOS 11.2.6, and High Sierra 10.13.3 Supplemental Update.

Facebook to confirm election ad IDs by sending postcards
More information also alleged how Russians impose pro-Trump activities and political rallies on real Americans while pretending to be Americans.

PTI confirms Imran's third marriage to Bushra
In January, there were reports that Pakistani politician Imran Khan had married Bushra Maneka after news surfaced on social media. Mufti Saeed who was also nikah khawan of that marriage had not commented when asked about the ceremony of November 2015.

Valverde explains how Chelsea have an advantage over Barcelona
That was the 14th time the Argentine had hit the woodwork this term in the Primera Division and his performance deserved a goal. Barcelona travel to seventh-placed Eibar on Saturday afternoon in what could pose to be a hard afternoon for the Catalan side.

Zainab rape and murder case: Accused Imran Ali gets four death sentences
Her body was found on a trash heap on January 9 in the city of Kasur near Lahore , four days after she was reported missing. Earlier, police sources confirmed Imran, a neighbour of the girl, had confessed to his crime before an investigation team.

Aly Raisman shares powerful message in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue photos
As you can see in the video above, Danielle Herrington is the newest cover model for Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue . Herrington said she hopes to continue to inspire young black girls the way Banks inspired her.

Nepal gets first ever new cabinet with federal system
Similarly, Oli will act as the executive head of the party during the last two years when Dahal will be heading the government. The swearing-in was held 69 days after the completion of elections to the federal and provincial assemblies.

BMW unveils sleeker X4 ahead of Geneva debut
If you get a sense of déjà vu, no surprise, considering the 2019 X4 shares most of its underpinnings with the latest BMW X3 . Along with some minor restyling of the doors and new "subtly hexagonal" wheelarches has come a very different rear end.

Olympics: Shiffrin's Pyeongchang debut postponed because of high winds
Jansrud and Alexis Pinturault of France should contend. "It's a bummer that we're not able to race today", Shiffrin said. There's a chance star American skier Mikaela Shiffrin could have at least one of her events postponed.