Forget Manafort, the aide that struck secret deal with FBI could be singing like a canary – but about what?

While the country is paying attention to the indictment of former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort on money laundering charges, a former foreign policy adviser to then-candidate Donald Trump secretly pleaded guilty to making a false statement to the FBI about his interactions with officials close to the Russian government.

George Papadopoulos “struck a cooperation agreement with Special Counsel Robert Mueller, secretly pleading guilty three weeks ago to lying to federal agents about his contacts with Kremlin-connected Russians,” NBC News reported.

Papadopoulos is seen in the photo below from Trump’s Instagram account, sitting in the center of the table on the left.

Meeting with my national security team in #WashingtonDC. #Trump2016

A post shared by President Donald J. Trump (@realdonaldtrump) on

A cooperation agreement means Papadopoulos is now singing like a canary.

“Through his false statements and omissions, defendant Papadopoulos impeded the FBI’s ongoing investigation into the existence of any links or coordination between individuals associated with the Campaign and the Russian government’s efforts to interfere with the 2016 presidential election,” court documents show.

More from NBC News:

Court documents unsealed Monday in the Papadopoulos case outline how foreign nationals with ties to the Russian government were seeking to establish a relationship with at least one campaign official and that they offered “dirt” on Hillary Clinton.

Papadopoulos, 30, claimed in his first interview with the FBI that he made the contacts before Trump named him as a member of his campaign foreign policy team in March 2016, calling him an “excellent guy.” He actually began communicating with them after joined the campaign as an energy expert.


One of the contacts, a Russian woman, tried to arrange a meeting between the Trump campaign and Russian government officials, according to the court documents.

Papadopoulos mistakenly described the woman in an email as the niece of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Another person, identified as an “overseas professor,” told Papadopoulos that Moscow had “dirt” on Hillary Clinton in the form of “thousands of emails.”

The campaign discussed Papadopoulos’ efforts in emails:

Papadopoulos’ attorneys said in a statement that his client will heard from when in court.

“We will have the opportunity to comment on George’s involvement when called upon by the Court at a later date,” the statement said, according to NBC News. “We look forward to presenting all the facts that led to the events that resulted in this charge.”


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