Former Chairman of Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign Paul Manafort is being accused of laundering money from a Ukrainian political party to offshore accounts in Central America.
Manafort’s name reemerged just shortly after FBI Director James Comey told members of Congress that the bureau is investigating possible ties between members of Trump’s presidential campaign and the Russian government.
The accusations come from Serhiy Leshchenko, a member of the Ukrainian parliament and a journalist, who released documents to American media alleging illegal payments were made from the pro-Russian Party of Regions, which included former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, whom Manafort was contracted to work for.
Manafort resigned from Trump’s presidential campaign last fall after it was discovered that Manafort may have received nearly $13 million in secret payments from the Party of Regions. Manafort has maintained his innocence, and says that the alleged secret payments, listed in the party’s “black ledger,” were never made to him.
The recent accusations detail a single instance of possible money laundering. According to Lescchenko, Manafort’s political firm made a purchase for 501 computers, a transaction that cost around $750,000, to another company in Belize. The secret “black ledger” from Yanukovych’s party also lists a $750,000 transaction to Manafort on the very same day.
The computer company in Belize has previously been listed by the Central Bank as a shell company, and was allegedly conducting other transactions in money lanndering schemes, according to the New York Times.
The “black ledger” details illegal cash payments the Party of Regions made during its political campaigns, according to Newsweek. Last fall, Manafort’s name was listed among those found in the “black ledger.” Manafort claims his name was forged, but the accusations led to his leaving the Trump campaign.