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Paul Manafort: FBI ‘raided home of former Trump chairman’

Donald Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort,Image copyright Reuters

The FBI has conducted a pre-dawn raid on the Virginia home of Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, US media have reported.

Federal agents are said to have seized files and other material on 26 July, a day after Mr Manafort voluntarily met the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Mr Manafort left the Trump campaign over questions about his foreign ties.

The FBI is leading one of several investigations into alleged Russian meddling in last year’s US election.

Special counsel Robert Mueller, who is head of the FBI investigation, left Mr Manafort’s Alexandria home with “various records”, the Washington Post reported.

A day before the raid, Mr Manafort voluntarily met a congressional panel also investigating Russia’s alleged influence on the 2016 election.

Analysts say the search warrant may suggest investigators wanted to be sure Mr Manafort would hand over all records in response to a grand jury subpoena.

Mr Manafort’s spokesman, Jason Maloni, confirmed to US media that federal agents had “executed a search warrant at one of Mr Manafort’s residences”.

“Mr Manafort has consistently co-operated with law enforcement and other serious inquiries and did so on this occasion as well,” he added.

It was unclear what documents and material were taken from Mr Manafort’s home.

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The ex-campaign chair has handed over files to the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate and House Intelligence Committees for their respective Russia probes.

The material reportedly includes notes Mr Manafort took during a meeting with Donald Trump Jr and a Russian lawyer at Trump Tower in New York in June 2016.

Mr Trump Jr’s emails show he took the meeting and invited Mr Manafort after he was promised damaging material about his father’s Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton.

In June, Mr Manafort retroactively registered as a foreign agent with the Justice Department for his consulting work for a Russia-backed, Ukrainian political party.

Mr Manafort resigned from the Trump campaign last August after he was accused of accepting millions of dollars in cash for representing Kremlin interests in the Ukraine and the US, including his dealings with an oligarch linked to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

BBC News – World

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