Gates says he helped Manafort hide payments

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On his second day on the stand in the trial of his former business partner, political consultant and former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates testified that former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort pressed for a secretary of the Army appointment for one of the lenders who had given him money despite falsified income information on the documents.

Gates ended three days of testimony earlier on Wednesday, the trial's seventh day, after admitting he lied, stole money and cheated on his wife, as lawyers for Manafort attacked his character.

Manafort also falsely classified another $1.5 million in income as a loan, Welch testified - while adding that Manafort never indicated he had foreign bank accounts on his tax returns.

Gates explained that Manafort's financial difficulties worsened in 2014, when Viktor Yanukovych was no longer in power and the Party of Regions disintegrated.

But when Downing tried to question Gates on Tuesday about what the special counsel team had asked him about the Trump campaign, Andres objected.

When asked if he took "unauthorized expenses" from Manafort to "fund your separate secret life", Gates replied, "yes, I acknowledge I had a period of time where I had another relationship".

"If it doesn't say Men's Warehouse, then I don't know it", Ellis said after learning the pronunciation of the "House of Bijan", where Manafort bought some particularly high-end goods.

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Then, turning solemn, Gates said he had "no doubt in his mind" that the Special Counsel's Office would rip up the plea agreement and throw the charges - and then some - back onto him if he were wrong about what Manafort had done.

After Mr Gates described his theft as "unauthorised transactions" instead of embezzlement, Mr Downing prodded him to use the latter term - and Mr Gates ultimately relented, saying: "It was embezzlement from Mr Manafort".

Downing summed up his questioning by asking Gates: "After all these lies, and the fraud you have committed, you expect this jury to believe you?"

Manafort, 69, faces tax evasion and bank fraud charges, as he is accused of hiding a "significant percentage" of income earned from his lobbyist work in Ukraine from the IRS.

But as soon as Downing asked about "the secret life of Rick Gates", the witness volunteered, "There was a period of time, nearly ten years ago, when I had a relationship, yes".

Gates testified that he had an extramarital affair a decade ago, and also that he embezzled hundreds of thousands of dollars from Manafort.

Before the final bang - or was it a whimper? - prosecutors had their own opportunity Wednesday morning to revisit with Gates exactly what he had done by way of financial crimes, and the steep, lifelong effect of prison time he could face if he told the jury inaccuracies about Manafort. That includes longtime Manafort deputy Rick Gates, who testified against his former boss.

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He testified under terms of a deal with Justice Department Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who's investigating suspected collusion between Russian Federation and Trump's campaign during the 2016 presidential election.

U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III has been pushing prosecutors to hurry through their case.

In detailed testimony, Gates walked prosecutors through the step-by-step process on how he and Manafort doctored and backdated documents.

Manafort lawyer Kevin Downing got in a final shot in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia, raising the possibility Gates had not one, but four extramarital affairs. He told jurors he embezzled from Manafort by filing false expense reports. But Trump has shown interest in the proceedings, tweeting support for Manafort and suggesting he has been treated worse than gangster Al Capone. He was so desperate, prosecutors say, that he allegedly falsified loan application documents to keep himself afloat.

"I am here to tell the truth and to take responsibility for my actions".

Gates laying out a roadmap on how he and Manafort allegedly dodged USA taxes. after admitting Monday they committed numerous crimes as business partners. Prosecutors had previously said that Manafort's interactions with Calk were the only part of the trial expected to overlap with his Trump campaign role.

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