Lawyer pleads guilty to lying to U.S. investigators in Russia probe
February 21, 2018 | 2:16 PM
by Times TV

A lawyer and son-in-law of one of Russia's richest men pleaded guilty on Tuesday to a charge of lying to federal investigators as part of U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Alex van der Zwaan, who departed from a hearing at a federal court in Washington, will face sentencing on April 3. U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller on Tuesday stepped up pressure on two former Trump campaign aides to cooperate in his probe into possible collusion with Russia.

The case involves work that van der Zwaan, a 33-year-old Dutch citizen, performed in 2012 about Ukraine for Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, senior officials in Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign. The two former aides have been charged with conspiracy to launder money and failure to register as foreign agents in connection with work for a pro-Russia Ukrainian party.

The charge against van der Zwaan make no reference to Trump's campaign or the 2016 election. But legal experts said the charge would put more pressure on the former Trump aides to cooperate with Mueller as he looks into whether Russia tried to influence the election in favour of Trump by hacking the emails of leading Democrats and distributing disinformation and propaganda online.

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