WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The former campaign manager for U.S. President Donald Trump, Paul Manafort, was told to surrender to federal authorities on Monday, according to two media reports, in the first charges stemming from a special counsel investigation of possible Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
Manfort was to surrender to federal law enforcement authorities, CNN and the New York Times reported, each citing a source with knowledge of the matter.
The charges would be the first from the investigation of Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller, who was appointed to look into alleged Russian meddling to sway the election in favor of Trump.
The Times also reported that Manafort associate Rick Gates would also surrender.
Manafort, 68, served the Trump campaign from June to August of 2016 before resigning amid reports he may have received millions in illegal payments from a pro-Russian political party in Ukraine.
Mueller has been investigating Manafort’s financial and real estate dealings and his prior work for that political group, the Party of Regions, which backed former Ukrainian leader Viktor Yanukovich.
Investigators also examined potential money laundering by Manafort and other possible financial crimes, sources have told Reuters.
Gates was a long-time business partner of Manafort and has ties to many of the same Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs. He also served as deputy to Manafort during his brief tenure as Trump’s campaign chairman.
Trump has denied any allegations of collusion with the Russians and called the probe "a witch hunt." The Kremlin also has denied the allegations.
(Additional reporting by Mark Hosenball; Editing by Peter Cooney and Jeffrey Benkoe)