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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Paul Manafort. Photo: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Special Counsel Robert Mueller brought 32 new financial charges against former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his business associate Rick Gates on Thursday.

Why it matters: "The new charges intensify the legal pressure on Manafort and Gates as they prepare for trial later this year," the Washington Post says.

The new charges filed in the Eastern District of Virginia:

  • Both Manafort and Gates were charged with allegedly filing, and assisting with filing, individual income taxes that falsely claimed they didn't have financial interests in an account in a foreign country, and failing to accurately report the associated income.
  • They were charged unlawfully failing to file a disclosure with Treasury related to foreign accounts.
  • The final 9 counts cite that Manafort and Gates allegedly did "conspire to execute a scheme and artifice to defraud one or more financial institutions."

What we know:

  • Per Politico, while there were no new defendants named in Thursday's indictment, "it alleges that the men had a 'conspirator' at at least one of the lenders from which Manafort obtained the loans."
  • The charges claim that more than $75 million "flowed through offshore accounts the men had set up in foreign countries," per CNN.
  • They both used the millions in offshore accounts "on home improvement and to refinance their mortgages," CNN reports, and Gates used it "for his mortgage and children's tuition."
  • Per BuzzFeed, Manafort "made more than $12 million in wire transfers," and spent it on "home improvements, antique rugs, clothing, cars, and real estate, among other things."

What it means: These new charges strengthen Mueller's case against Manafort and Gates, which could go to trial later this year. They also suggest that a plea deal for Manafort or Gates is unlikely, at least in the short term.

Manafort's attorney: "Paul Manafort is innocent of the allegations set out in the newly filed indictments and he is confident that he will be acquitted of all charges. The new allegations against Mr. Manafort, once again, have nothing to do with Russia and 2016 election interference/collusion. Mr. Manafort is confident that he will be acquitted and violations of his constitutional rights will be remedied."

Go deeper

Health care workers feel stress, burnout more than a year into the pandemic

Photo: Steve Pfost/Newsday RM via Getty Images

More than a year into the coronavirus pandemic, some 3 in 10 health care professionals say they've considered leaving the profession, citing burnout and stress, a Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation poll out Thursday indicates.

Why it matters: Studies throughout the pandemic have indicated rising rates of depression and trauma among health care workers, group that is no longer seeing the same public displays of gratitude as during the onset of the pandemic.

Russia announces end to massive troop buildup near Ukraine

Russia's Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu (L) with President Vladimir Putin. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

Russia's defense minister said Thursday that massive military exercises near the border with Ukraine had been completed, and that he had ordered troops to return to their permanent bases by May 1, according to state media.

Why it matters: Tens of thousands of troops and heavy military equipment had been moved to the border of eastern Ukraine and the annexed territory of Crimea over the last month, sparking fears of a potential Russian invasion.

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
46 mins ago - Economy & Business

Stock buybacks are kicking back into high gear

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

It was expected that with the economy improving and company balance sheets already loaded with cash, U.S. firms would slow down their debt issuance in 2021 after setting records in 2020. But just the opposite has happened.

Why it matters: Companies generally issue bonds for one of two reasons — because they're worried about not having enough cash to cover their expenses or because they want to lever up and make risky bets.

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