President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort has agreed to plead guilty to charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States and witness tampering, court documents indicated on Friday.
It comes three weeks after Paul Manafort was convicted in a separate trial on eight counts related to financial fraud, and as the Mueller investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation increasingly pressures the White House.
The pressure on Manafort only grew after he was convicted last month in a Virginia trial on bank fraud and tax fraud charges brought by Mueller. Add Russia Investigation as an interest to stay up to date on the latest Russia Investigation news, video, and analysis from ABC News. So far, Manafort has refused to turn on his former boss - unlike other Trump administration figures - and there has been speculation that he is waiting on a pardon from the president at some later date.
Manafort will plead guilty to one count of conspiracy against the United States and one count of conspiracy to obstruct justice, according to documents filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Jury selection was due to start on Monday.
The charges do not involve Manafort's work for USA president Donald Trump.
In pleading guilty, Manafort, the former Trump campaign chairman, would admit he broke the law - a concession he refused to make throughout his Alexandria trial and since he was charged almost a year ago in Washington.
The allegations do not involve his work with the Trump campaign.
Manafort was facing seven counts of foreign lobbying violations and witness tampering in a trial set to begin later this month.
The details of the plea deal ― including whether it indicates that Manafort has to cooperate with Mueller's team ― are not yet available.
The D.C. trial that was averted by the new plea deal stood to pull back the curtain on the world of covert lobbying on behalf foreign powers in the nation's capital. Manafort faces up to a decade in prison after the Virginia jury verdict, and a conviction in Washington could have increased his prison time. But Manafort has not been charged with anything related to the campaign. The money, the newspaper reported, came from the pro-Russian party of Viktor Yanukovych, the onetime Ukraine president.
One of the potential witnesses against Manafort was Sam Patten, who pleaded guilty on August 31 to failing to register as a Ukrainian agent. The discovery of his witness contacts led to a superseding indictment in June and Manafort's jailing ahead of his trial.