Report: Manafort Owed Millions to Pro-Russia Interests

Paul Manafort, President Trump’s former campaign chairman, owed as much as $17 million to pro-Russia groups before joining Trump’s team last year, The New York Times reports. Citing financial records obtained in Cyprus—where Manafort held bank accounts while working as a political consultant in Eastern Europe—the report says the money was owed by shell companies tied to Manafort’s business. One Cyprus company allegedly tied to Manafort owed a total of $7.8 million to a business affiliated with Russian oligarch and Putin ally Oleg V. Deripaska, who previously sued Manafort on claims he owed $19 million as part of a failed investment. Another $9.9 million was owed to a company apparently linked to a Ukrainian lawmaker from the pro-Russia Party of Regions. The financial statements gave no indication the loans had been repaid as of December 2015, the Times reports. Jason Maloni, a spokesman for Manafort, dismissed the report’s findings, saying the Cyprus financial records are “stale and do not purport to reflect any current financial arrangements.”