nsucurrent.com April 24, 2018

Mueller Authorized To Probe Manafort's Alleged Collusion With Russia

04 April 2018, 01:35 | Colleen Roy

Alexander van der Zwaan, former lawyer who lied in Mueller investigation, gets 30-day sentence, $20G in fines

A Lawyer Who Admitted Lying To The Special Counsel's Office Was Just Sentenced To One Month In Jail

Alex van der Zwaan was served with a 30-day jail sentence on Tuesday along with a $20,000 fine after admitting to lying to special agents in Mueller's Russian Federation probe during November 2017.

On Tuesday, a Dutch lawyer who lied to investigators received the first prison sentence related to the probe.

Prosecutor Andrew Weissmann did not request a specific punishment for van der Zwann but he did point out that "the defendant is an attorney who after being explicitly warned about the consequences of lying. went ahead and repeatedly lied to the government".

Van der Zwaan also deleted emails rather than turning them over to authorities, including one from Person A directing him to communicate using an encrypted application, and others showing he explored leaving the law firm to work directly for Gates and Manafort in about 2012 and 2013. "We count on people to turn over documents", Weissmann said.

Van der Zwaan, who speaks French and Russian and graduated from King's College London in 2006, is married to the daughter of Russian billionaire German Khan.

Alex van der Zwaan, 33, a former associate at USA -based Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, faced up to six months in prison after pleading guilty on February 20 to making false statements.

"What I did was wrong".

That's why van der Zwann turned over evidence in December 2017, Schwartz said, and didn't toss it into the river near his onetime office in London.

Mueller's team, formally called the Office of the Special Counsel, said in a filing that "van der Zwaan is in an unusual position of having information related to the office's investigation that is not widely known - including information that he knows first-hand due to his role in the conduct the office is investigating". The report, authored by the law firm, was about the corruption trial of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. Mueller indicted Gates in October, along with Manafort, on charges of money laundering and illegal lobbying.

In particular, they argued that prosecutors' knowledge of Manafort's Ukraine work did not arise directly from Mueller's probe but instead grew out of separate Justice Department inquiries dating to 2014.

In pleading guilty, Mr van der Zwaan admitted that he had lied to Federal Bureau of Investigation agents about previous communications with Rick Gates, a protege of Mr Manafort who held a senior position in the Trump campaign.

The indictment against him did not refer to the 2016 election campaign.

Van der Zwaan faced an estimated sentencing range of between zero to six months.

Prosecutors alleged that van der Zwaan falsely told federal investigators that he last communicated with Gates in mid-August 2016 through an innocuous text message.

The report prepared by Skadden was used to defend Ukraine's then pro-Russia President Viktor Yanukovych from worldwide criticism over the jailing of Ms Tymoshenko, a bitter rival who he defeated to become president in 2010. Manafort and Gates's job was to run cover for this clearly undemocratic prosecution.

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