Paul Manafort

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File

Ex-Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort pleads guilty

September 14, 2018 - 12:23 pm

WASHINGTON (1010 WINS/AP) —  Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort has pleaded guilty to two federal charges as part of a cooperation deal with prosecutors.

The deal requires him to cooperate "fully and truthfully'' with special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation, Judge Amy Brennan said in court Friday, adding that Manafort must participate in interviews and debriefings, provide documents and testify in future cases.

The charges against Manafort are related to his Ukrainian consulting work -- not Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, which is the central issue in the special counsel's investigation.

Friday's move gives Mueller another successful conviction while allowing Manafort to avoid facing another costly public trial.

Manafort was convicted last month of eight financial crimes in a separate trial in Virginia.

Earlier, the White House said Manafort's decision to plead guilty and cooperate with Mueller is "totally unrelated" to the president.

Press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement, "This had absolutely nothing to do with the President or his victorious 2016 Presidential campaign. It is totally unrelated.''