ALEXANDRIA, VA — Throughout Paul Manafort’s trial here, witnesses have indicated that Manafort started running out of cash when his Ukraine work dried up in 2014. This apparent reduction in income appears to have prompted Manafort, along with his deputy Rick Gates, to submit false or misleading documents to banks to obtain loans.
Although we’ve seen a lot of the numbers throughout the trial, Tuesday offered the best glimpse into just how worried Manafort was about paying bills, specifically his tax bill. An email submitted into evidence on Tuesday and made available to the press Tuesday night shows Manafort reacting angrily to the amount of taxes he owed on his 2014 tax returns.
“WTF?” Manafort wrote in the email to Gates dated April 17, 2015. “How could I be blindsided like this. You told me you were on top of this.”
“We need to discuss options. This is a disaster,” Manafort continued in the email. “When am I supposed to write this check?”
The email from Manafort came after Gates informed him that the tax accountants had calculated that Manafort would have an increase in taxes of about $509,000 in 2014. Gates testified on Tuesday that the email chain took place when Manafort’s accountants revealed that the actual amount owed by Manafort in taxes would be higher than they had projected earlier.
Gates told Manafort in the email that he was working with the accountants on ways to possibly reduce the amount of taxes Manafort would owe as a result of his 2014 return.
Read the entire email chain below: