Paul Manafort is a long-time political operative who joined the Trump campaign in March 2016 and became its chairman before resigning amid controversy about his former work for pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine.
Before joining the Trump campaign, Manafort spent over a decade advising former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and his political party, the Party of Regions, which also enjoyed the support of the Kremlin. Yanukovych, who was ousted from power and exiled to Russia in 2014, reportedly set aside $12.7 million in illegal and undisclosed payments for Manafort. During his time in Ukraine, Manafort also lobbied on behalf of or worked with several Russian oligarchs, including Oleg Deripaska, an aluminum magnate known as “Putin’s favorite industrialist” with whom Manafort reportedly did at least $60 million in business and who is currently suing Manafort for $19 million; Dmitry Firtash, a natural-gas titan considered “Putin’s handpicked surrogate” in the industry with extensive alleged links to organized crime; and Rinat Akhmetov, who originally helped bring Manafort into contact with the Party of Regions. During his time with the Trump campaign, Manafort regularly consulted with Konstantin Kilimnik, a Russian-Ukrainian former employee with ties to Russian intelligence, at one point discussing providing Deripaska with private briefings on the status of Trump’s campaign. The FBI has twice received warrants to wiretap Manafort under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, once in 2014 to investigate his work in Ukraine and again in 2016 after his involvement with the Trump campaign, and in July 2017 conducted a pre-dawn, no-knock raid on Manafort’s home to seize materials related to the Russia investigation. On October 30, 2017 Manafort, along with Rick Gates, was indicted as part of the Mueller investigation on 12 charges including money laundering and conspiracy against the United States. Both Manafort and Gates have pleaded not guilty to the charges. (Photo credit: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images)