On the heels of the DNC email leaks, Hillary Clinton‘s campaign manager, Robby Mook, pointed the finger squarely at the Russians and said that the emails were leaked to help elect Donald Trump. As a result, there has been much talk about Trump’s campaign and ties to Russia. Many Democrats are specifically bringing up the fact that Trump’s campaign manager, Paul Manafort, recently consulted for pro-Russian politicians in the Ukraine, including helping former Ukrainian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych (a Vladimir Putin ally).
LawNewz.com did some digging into those alleged ties, and discovered that for several years Manafort was also caught up in a lawsuit filed by former Ukranian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.She accused Manafort and others of funneling money into the United States to help pay Ukrainian prosecutors and supporters of Viktor Yanukovych who in 2010 narrowly defeated Tymoshenko to become Ukraine’s president. After four years of litigation, the lawsuit was dismissed in 2015 by a Manhattan federal judge. Attorneys denied Manafort had any involvement.
The lawsuit centers around what Tymoshenko called politically motivated prosecutions against her. Tymoshenko, who served as the first female Prime Minister from 2007 to 2010, faced criminal charges for alleged involvement with a gas import contract signed with Russia. She was ultimately released from prison in 2014 after a revision of the Ukranian criminal code that decriminalized the actions for which she was convicted. At around the same time, Yanukovych was ousted from power. She has long held that the prosecutions against her were unjust, corrupt and were motivated purely by politics.
In 2011, Tymoshenko filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York against Ukranian industrialist Dmytro Firtash, and others for allegedly running a U.S. based racketeering enterprise which stood to benefit financially from her prosecution. One of the named defendants in the lawsuit is none of other than Paul Manafort.