Special counsel Mueller's team says Paul Manafort lied to investigators, breaking plea deal

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By Alex Johnson and Tom Winter  with NBC News U.S. News
File photo of Paul Manafort
File photo of Paul Manafort

Federal prosecutors asked a judge on Monday to sentence former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, saying he broke his plea agreement by lying to the FBI and investigators for special counsel Robert Mueller.

Manafort, 69, was convicted of eight counts of tax evasion and bank fraud in a trial in February. In September, he agreed to cooperate with Mueller's investigation when he pleaded guilty to two new counts and admitted his guilt to 10 counts outstanding from his earlier trial in Virginia.

On Monday, prosecutors with Mueller's office told the court that "after signing the plea agreement, Manafort committed federal crimes by lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Special Counsel's Office on a variety of subject matters, which constitute breaches of the agreement." Mueller's office made the assertion in a status report filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C.

Manafort's lawyers disputed the assertions that he lied or broke the plea deal.

"After signing the plea agreement, Manafort met with the government on numerous occasions and answered the government's questions. Manafort has provided information to the government in an effort to live up to his cooperation obligations," his lawyers said in the documents.

"He believes he has provided truthful information and does not agree with the government's characterization or that he has breached the agreement," they said.

Manafort's lawyers also requested a sentencing date.

"Given the conflict in the parties' positions, there is no reason to delay the sentencing herein, and he asks the Court to set a sentencing date in this matter," they said.

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