This might explain why Paul Manafort was pulled off that plane while trying to travel with a revoked passport
Several weeks ago, Paul Manafort was pulled off an airplane while attempting to leave the country with a revoked passport. It was the first time Manafort’s name had surfaced in some time; he’d gone remarkably quiet for a guy who was rather loudly convicted and imprisoned and then pardoned by Donald Trump.
It raised a number of questions at the time. Was his passport still revoked from his previous legal troubles, or was it newly revoked – and if the latter, by whom? Why was Manafort attempting to travel to UAE? Was it for more illicit business? Was he trying to flee the country? Did this mean the DOJ was attempting to work around his pardon and find new charges to indict him on?
Now we may have some answers. On Tuesday the DOJ brought a superseding criminal indictment against Donald Trump’s Middle East money man, Tom Barrack. Not only do the new charges accuse Barrack of having essentially committed espionage on behalf of UAE, they also appear to directly involve Paul Manafort.
Manafort received a broad pardon from Trump – but it doesn’t appear to cover the specific crimes that he and Barrack are now accused of having committed. This suggests that Manafort could be on his way to indictment. In fact the DOJ may only be bringing this charge against Barrack first, for the specific purpose of trying to get him to flip on Manafort. In any case, this could explain why Manafort’s passport was revoked, and why he was recently trying to make it to UAE. There is obviously more to come on this front.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report