Manafort tentatively agrees to plea deal with special counsel -ABC News


WASHINGTON, Sept 13 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort has tentatively agreed to a plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller that would avoid his going on trial next week, ABC News reported on Thursday.

The deal is expected to be announced in a Washington courtroom on Friday, but it remains unclear whether Manafort has also agreed to cooperate with prosecutors, ABC said, citing three unnamed sources with knowledge of the discussions.

Manafort lawyer Kevin Downing and Mueller spokesman Peter Carr declined to comment on the ABC report.

Jury selection is scheduled to begin on Monday in Manafort's second trial in federal court in Washington on charges including conspiring to launder money, conspiring to defraud the United States, failing to register as a foreign agent and witness tampering.

Manafort was convicted last month at trial in Alexandria, Virginia, of charges including bank and tax fraud. The prosecutions of Manafort arose from Mueller's investigation into Russia's role in the 2016 U.S. election and whether Trump's campaign colluded with Moscow to help him win. Trump has denied colluding with the Russians and the Russians have denied interfering.

(Reporting by Eric Beech; Editing by Mohammad Zargham and Grant McCool)