Six bombshells from Rick Gates' testimony in the Paul Manafort trial

Gates said that he helped create documents to convert some income to a loan to lower Manafort's tax bill. However, the Manafort case - as President Donald Trump has been quick to point out - focuses on Manafort's business dealings and has no direct connection to Manafort's work with the Trump campaign.

Undercutting Gates' credibility is the foundation of Manafort's defense. Gates was indicted on similar charges to Manafort, which were dropped after he agreed to plead guilty to lesser charges of conspiring against the US and lying to the government officials in exchange for this testimony.

For the last two days in court, Gates has testified that he and Manafort committed bank and tax fraud together.

According to Gates, he worked with Manafort on ways to "reduce his overall tax liability", including by falsifying loans that were actually income.

The defense highlighted the terms of the deal Gates received for testifying in the bank and tax fraud case against Manafort on charges that stem from special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russian Federation probe MORE's Russian Federation investigation.

In an aggressive cross-examination on Tuesday, Manafort's lead attorney, Kevin Downing, said to Gates: "You stole from Mr. Manafort". But Gates pleaded guilty months later and agreed to cooperate in Mueller's investigation of Manafort, the only American charged by the special counsel to opt for trial instead of a guilty plea.

"The secret life of Rick Gates", he said.

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In other testimony, Gates recounted how he falsified documents for Manafort, including converting a PDF of a profit-and-loss statement to a Microsoft Word document so he could doctor it to inflate the business' income.

The testimony came as prosecutors wrapped up their questioning of Gates mid-afternoon Tuesday.

"WTF", Mr Manafort wrote in response, "How could I be blindsided like this". In a follow-up email, the company said: "She is no longer working here". Manafort broke his stare only to review government exhibits on a small monitor in front of him.

"It's embezzlement", Gates finally admitted.

Gates, who is awaiting sentencing, told jurors that he siphoned off money without Manafort's knowledge by filing false expense reports.

Gates also testified that Manafort in 2014 expressed frustration to him about the amount he owed in taxes.

Paul Manafort's former accountant was sacked from a Virginia firm after she told the court she was aware that Manafort's tax returns contained false information.

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