Special counsel Robert Mueller’s office moved to officially dismiss recent charges against Rick Gates Tuesday afternoon, after the former deputy chairman to President Trump’s 2016 campaign pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering and tax fraud, reports the Washington Post.
Both Gates and Manafort were previously indicted with multiple counts of conspiracy to launder money, acting as unregistered agents on behalf of foreign governments, making false statements, and failure to disclose financial records.
The special counsel’s office decision to drop the charges signals Gates may be offering to cooperate with Mueller’s probe into Manafort’s finances; further suggesting the ongoing investigation into Russian “collusion” centers on the former campaign chairman’s foreign investments and financial ties.
Rick Gates joined the Trump campaign in the early months of 2016 after Manafort was hired as chairman, and worked under him as his deputy in the run-up to the US presidential election.
Paul Manafort has maintained his innocence throughout Mueller’s probe, vowing to fight the allegations in court since his initial indictment last October.