Paul Manafort Was $19 Million in Debt to New Figure on Russian Sanction’s List
As the Mueller investigation rolls on, Americans have become familiar with Russian figures like Oleg Deripaska and Aras Agalarov. Paul Manafort was well connected to these oligarchs and reportedly leveraged these relationships to help the Trump campaign.
According to Time, Manafort not only had business relationships with these men, he was also in heavy debt to them. Victor Boyarkin, who appears on the latest Russian sanctions list, was reportedly responsible to collect this debt.
Boyarkin, who previously worked as an intelligence officer, was tasked to retrieve the debt for Oleg Deripaska. Manafort had borrowed money from Deripaska for a failed Ukranian business venture.
The former intelligence officer had sought out Manafort for many years, but he proved elusive. Deripaska claimed that Manafort had disappeared with $19 million of the oligarch’s money. The Russians did not hear about him again until he was serving as Donald Trump’s campaign manager. He reportedly sent emails to his Russian contacts suggesting that he may be able to provide useful information.
Boyarkin spoke to Time Magazine about his relationship with Donald Trump’s former campaign manager. He told the magazine, “I came down on him hard. He owed us a lot of money. And he was offering ways to pay it back.”
What exactly Manafort provided to Boyarkin and Deripaska in unknown. Robert Mueller and his team attempted to speak with Boyarkin about the relationship, but he says, “I told them to go dig a ditch.”
Despite agreeing to cooperate with Federal Investigators, Manafort’s behavior has been odd. In late November, the FBI announced that Manafort had violated his plea agreement. Investigators felt that he was holding back important information regarding his Russian relationships.
While Manafort did not serve the campaign for a long time, he was a key figure. If Boyarkin’s claims are proven true, it shines a new light on the Trump campaign’s relationship with Russia.