Published: Mon, March 18, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Mueller Pushes Back Sentencing For Key Witness Due To 'Several' Ongoing Investigations

Mueller Pushes Back Sentencing For Key Witness Due To 'Several' Ongoing Investigations

Rick Gates, a key cooperator in the special counsel's Russian Federation investigation, is not ready to be sentenced because he's continuing to help with "several ongoing investigations".

Unlike Manafort, who stood trial and was found guilty in one case in Virginia before pleading guilty in another case in Washington, Gates agreed early on to cooperate with Mueller's team and took the stand to testify against his former business partner.

Gates is a central figure in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian election interference and possible coordination with the Trump campaign.

"The signs I see are all pointing towards an investigation that is wrapping up", said Patrick Cotter, a former federal prosecutor who has worked with Weissmann on organized crime cases.

The request marks the third time that two sides have asked the court to delay Gates' sentencing, citing his ongoing cooperation in the Russian Federation probe.

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The filing suggests that Gates might still helpful beyond Manafort, and that there are investigators who still want Gates' cooperation.

"Gates continues to cooperate with respect to several ongoing investigations, and accordingly the parties do not believe it is appropriate to commence the sentencing process at this time", said the joint filing by Mueller and Gates' attorney. He was pleaded guilty last February for financial hoax and lying to the authorities. If Gates wasn't needed anymore, the parties likely would have asked to set a sentencing date.

Gates helped the government in obtaining a trial conviction of Manafort previous year. Calling his continued cooperation in various investigations.

Gates worked closely for years as Manafort's right-hand man as a political consultant in Ukraine and as his deputy on the presidential campaign. As Donald Trump's deputy campaign chairman and a top inauguration official, Gates had firsthand insight into several of the president's senior aides and activities.

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