Manafort offered ‘private briefings’ with Russian billionaire during Trump’s presidential campaign – Los Angeles Times

In the middle of Donald Trump‘s presidential run, then-campaign Chairman Paul Manafort said he was willing to provide “private briefings” about the campaign to a Russian billionaire the U.S. government considers close to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Manafort’s offer was memorialized in an email exchange with a former employee of his political consulting firm in July 2016. It was first reported by the Washington Post, which said portions of Manafort’s emails were read to reporters.

Manafort spokesman Jason Maloni confirmed to the Associated Press that the email exchanges were legitimate but said no briefings ever occurred. The email involved an offer for Oleg Deripaska, a wealthy Russian who made his money in the aluminum business.

The July 7, 2016, email came a little over a week before the Republican National Convention, while Manafort was leading the Trump campaign’s day-to-day operations. It also occurred about a month after Manafort attended a meeting with a Russian lawyer at Trump Tower in New York. That meeting was brokered by Donald Trump Jr., who was told in emails that the meeting was part of a Russian government effort to help his father’s campaign.

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