PAUL MANAFORT, RICK GATES TURN THEMSELVES IN TO THE FBI FOR VARIOUS TAX AND MONEY LAUNDERING RELATED ISSUES.
This may be my new desktop at work. 🙂
Paul Manafort, and his assistant Rick Gates, turned themselves in this morning to the FBI. Paul’s history is well documented on this blog, but Rick caught me off guard. He’s been a lesser name in this whole mess, being Paul’s assistant in Davis Manafort, a senior member of the Trump Inauguration Committee, and the aide to billionaire Tom Barrack.
They turned themselves in to the FBI this morning, and were charged on a dozen indictments, mostly related to tax evasion, money laundering, and failure to register as foreign agents. The scariest sounding one is Conspiracy against the United States, though that is more or less another way of nailing them for tax charges.
Reactions from all over were visceral, with people taking to Twitter, Reddit, and other Social Media today to express their relief that justice, though slow, is moving in the right direction.
Per Steve Reilly from USA Today, the D.C. District Court, where these indictments were executed from, has 4 more “Sealed vs. Sealed” case dockets between number 17-182 (See Next Section for details on George Papadopoulos) and 17-201 (Manafort). 185, 190, 198, and 200 are still sealed. It’s a little bit of a logical leap that these are related cases, but it’s a safe one to make.
Just to show how good Mueller’s team of lawyers are, they were able to successfully petition the court to compel Manafort’s former attorney to testify against him, by arguing that the attorney-client privilege can be waived by the court in the case of a crime of fraud. It was pretty ballsy, and it worked.
Bail was set at $10 million for Manafort, and $5 million for Gates. Keep in mind, bail can only be paid with legally begotten funds, and one of the punishments of money laundering and these other crimes is asset forfeiture.
Might explain why Paul Manafort had a public defender.
The Trump team was very quick to throw Manafort under the bus, saying that he was a bad person when he came in, was bad when he left, and that none of these charges were related directly to the Russia Investigation. Sean Hannity and some other Right Wing Media talking heads joined in the clarion call.
That chorus lasted all of about five minutes, until the news about George Papodopoulos broke.
GEORGE PAPADOPOULOS ARRESTED IN JULY, PLED GUILTY IN OCTOBER. WAS COOPERATING WITNESS SINCE HIS ARREST.
Third man in from the left is George Papadopoulos, a 30 year old member of Donald Trump’s campaign, and a senior member of his National Security Task Force.
This picture was taken on March 31, 2016 in the Trump Hotel International in Washington, D.C., and was later put on Trump’s Twitter and Instagram, sans names. A picture with names labeled like this is never good.
George lied to the FBI earlier this year to the FBI about the timing of when he received mails from Russia, and lied about trying to set up a meeting between the Russians and the Trump Campaign.
He was arrested July 27th, and pled guilty on October 5th to a charge of lying to the FBI. He has been a cooperating witness ever since. He gave Mueller all of his mails, all of his files, all of his contacts.
He wore a wire. Anyone that talked to him since July is on tape with the FBI.
Sleep tight, Corey.
TWO COMPANIES IMPLICATED IN MANAFORT INDICTMENT ARE MERCURY PUBLIC AFFAIRS AND PODESTA GROUP
Two companies were named in the indictment as places that worked with Paul Manafort to spread their messages, Mercury Public Affairs and Podesta Group.
Tony Podesta, head of the Pedesta Group and brother of John Podesta, Hilary Clinton’s former Campaign Manager, left his company today.
FACEBOOK SHOWED RUSSIAN CONTENT TO 126 MILLION AMERICANS DURING THE ELECTION
It wasn’t just paid advertising that the Russians used to spread propaganda. They also released thousands of pieces of free information which was shared freely across the web. All in all, this was seen by 126 million Americans.
RUPERT MURDOCH OWNED OUTLETS GO FULL TRUMP TODAY
At this point, it’s no longer a question of if Rupert Murdoch is in deep shit, but how deep it is. Fox News, Fox Business, New York Post, even the Wall Street Journal are joining in to the coordinated circle jerk in an attempt to distract his viewers from the impending storm.
A couple months back, I talked about rumors from Louise and others about how Fox News was under FBI investigation for their role in spreading propaganda. Later, a lawsuit came out alleging that the White House had coordinated stories with Fox News about the Seth Rich killing, right as Robert Mueller was appointed as the Special Counselor.
At this point, Rupert knows he’s screwed. Fox News had the chance months ago to either be a news organization that could own up to their role in things, or become state run propaganda. They chose the latter. Time will show they choose…poorly.
KUSHNER DELETES TWITTER, TAKES UNANNOUNCED TRIP TO SAUDI ARABIA, MARYLAND WANTS A PIECE OF HIM
Is it any shock that over the weekend, after news of the indictments came out, that Jared Kushner deleted his twitter account, and took an unannounced trip to Saudi Arabia, under the pretense of securing financing for his 666 Fifth Avenue building?
By the way, Saudi Arabia does not have an extradition treaty with the United States, but we do have a crap ton of soldiers there, many of whom are experts in capturing and retrieving persons of interest.
Speaking of interest, Maryland wants to ask him a few questions regarding his shady business practices as a glorified slum-lord. Jared has a bad habit of suing his tenants for small, insignificant things like complaining when their buildings flood, or coming after him for not paying his bills and the sewage gets shut off.
Remember, state charges cannot be pardoned by a President.
TRUMP MEETS WITH PENCE AND SESSIONS FOR LUNCH DAY OF FIRST PUBLIC INDICTMENTS
One way to deal with the impending doom and destruction is to have lunch with the Vice President and Attorney General.
Trump has two moves left in his arsenal, and that is to fire Mueller and pardon everyone. Neither move will be successful, and will end his presidency sooner rather than later. I’ve already described in Pardon Limitations why this won’t work, but it’s his only move left to keep everyone from flipping against him. He is the big fish. George is a minnow.
SPEAKING OF FOOD, RUMOR HAS IT TRUMP STRESS EATS
Last night, I saw a similar rumor that Trump had ordered the entire menu from Olive Garden over the weekend and was stress eating. I shrugged it off, but at this point I wouldn’t be surprised. Multiple insider accounts corroborated these stories.
It would really suck if he died of a heart attack before he can be tried for espionage and treason, which are capital offenses and carry the death penalty.
PUERTO RICO CANCELLED WHITEFISH CONTRACT, FBI BEGINS INVESTIGATION
The Washington Post reports earlier today that the territory of Puerto Rico has cancelled the contract between their electric utility and Whitefish, the two-man company from Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke’s hometown.
To make things even more interesting, the FBI has begun an investigation into this contract, to see if there was any impropriety.
ORRIN HATCH, TREY GOWDY, BOTH CALL TO ALLOW MUELLER TO DO HIS JOB
Senator Orrin Hatch, President Pro Tempre of the Senate called for calmer heads to prevail, and let Robert Mueller do his job. In a separate statement, Trey Gowdy, a long time Trump supporter, receiver of dubiously timed donations, and new head of the House Ethics Committee, also called for everyone to back off and let Mueller do his job.
What I find interesting is Trey saying this, not Orrin. I’ve suspected for a while that Trey is under investigation, and is up to his eyeballs in some crap. Him coming out and saying this tells me that he doesn’t want to be seen as a co-conspirator, or at least wants to distance himself from Trump.
That’s it for today. It was a crazy day, let’s see where tomorrow takes us.
Thank you, and have a good one.
“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”
– Katy Tur