In an e-mail, Mr. Gates stated, Mr. Manafort sought recommendation on modifying the assertion, asking, “How do I convert the PDF into a Word document?” Mr. Gates stated Mr. Manafort then modified the doc to point out that his agency had $three million in revenue as an alternative of greater than $600,000 in losses.
He additionally testified that Mr. Manafort had personally ordered cash wired from financial institution accounts in Cyprus to pay clothiers, landscapers and different bills within the United States. He stated Mr. Manafort’s accountants had been by no means advised of these funds — proof, prosecutors declare, of hundreds of thousands of in illegally hid revenue — as a result of “Mr. Manafort said we did not need to.”
But Mr. Gates additionally demonstrated his personal facility at falsifying paperwork, referring to what prosecutors stated was blatant fraud in bland phrases. He referred to invoices he altered for Mr. Manafort as “modified” and stated that adjustments to Mr. Manafort’s monetary paperwork typically required him to “update” or “edit the template.”
When Mr. Manafort wanted false mortgage paperwork — both to cut back his reported revenue to evade taxes or to inflate it to acquire financial institution loans — Mr. Gates stated he referred to as upon a legislation agency in Cyprus, run by a person nicknamed Dr. Ok., to assist him create the fakes.
His assured supply turned stumbling when Mr. Manafort’s protection lawyer started delving into monetary schemes that Mr. Gates executed for his personal profit, not Mr. Manafort’s. Asked how a lot of his personal revenue he had illegally hidden from tax authorities, for example, he stated he couldn’t provide you with a determine, however had “indicated” to prosecutors that he didn’t disclose all of it.
Pressed on how he stole $125,000 from certainly one of Mr. Manafort’s accounts, Mr. Gates repeatedly described his transfers of funds for faux bills as “unauthorized.” When Mr. Downing demanded to know why he refused to make use of the time period “embezzlement,” Mr. Gates replied, “You can use whatever word you like” earlier than lastly acknowledging that “it was embezzlement from Mr. Manafort.”
At one level, Judge T. S. Ellis III appeared to make the protection’s case extra successfully than Mr. Downing. When Mr. Gates asserted that Mr. Manafort “was very good at knowing where the money was and where it was going,” Judge Ellis identified that Mr. Manafort “didn’t know about the money you were stealing, so he didn’t do it that closely.”