During his press conference in Moscow broadcast live by 112-Ukraine on Friday morning, the fugitive ex-president of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych spoke on his relationship with his former adviser Paul Manafort, 112.ua reports.
According to Yanukovych, his relationship with Manafort began in the second half of 2005, when the latter got involved in Yanukovych’s 2006 parliamentary election campaign. After that came the 2007 fall election and the 2010 presidential election”, - Yanukovych explained.
“Throughout that time, Paul Manafort coordinated his actions with the Party of Regions apparatus. Personally I had no agreements with him. I never set any fees to be paid for his contribution and I never discussed this with him”, - the ex-president said.
“After the 2010 election, Paul Manafort served as my adviser pro bono. I had many non-staff advisers, so I met him whenever I spoke to my advisers. But Manafort did get involved whenever any international issues were on the agenda. I never had personal interactions as such with him. For the most part, he coordinated his actions with the Presidential Administration. Such was the arrangement. I have not met with or spoken to Paul Manafort since I left Ukraine. I use whatever information is published by media, nothing more”, - he said.
Paul Manafort and his business partner Richard W. Gates were officially indicted on 12 counts including a conspiracy against the United States of America, conspiracy to launder money, violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act, as well as provision of false statements under the Foreign Agents Registration Act and non-reporting of foreign bank accounts. According to the indictment, he “acted as an agent of overseas representatives on behalf of the government of Ukraine, the Party of Regions and Viktor Yanukovych”.
Both Manafort and Gates were placed under house arrest in October 2017, and consequently released in January 2018.