(Bloomberg) -- Paul Manafort reached out to executives who’d worked at London-based FBC Communications in his alleged effort to influence their testimony, according to two people familiar with the matter.
Manafort, who was President Donald Trump’s campaign chairman, was accused this week by Special Counsel Robert Mueller of attempted witness tampering. Manafort and an associate called and sent encrypted texts to two individuals earlier this year, attempting to persuade them to characterize the pro-Ukraine lobbying work they had done together years before as limited to Europe to avoid running afoul of U.S. laws. The prosecutors, in their filing, didn’t identify the individuals or firm.
They are Alan Friedman and Eckart Sagart, according to the people familiar with the matter. Longtime journalists Friedman and Sagart formed FBC, which stands for Fact-Based Communications and is no longer operating. They didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
Prosecutors said the two didn’t respond to the communications from Manafort and the associate, with one of them telling prosecutors he believed they were trying to induce him to commit perjury. The individuals shared communications with prosecutors, according to the filing.
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