Home / US / Manafort's former son-in-law gets 9 years for supply of fraud

Manafort's former son-in-law gets 9 years for supply of fraud

Yohai pleaded guilty to a timely supply of fraud, including renting out luxury homes without the permission of its owners, selling non-existent backstage passes for the Coachella Music Festival, and complaining band equipment belonging to someone else.

Among those swindled by Yohai was the award-winning actor Dustin Hoffman and Guy Aroch, a prominent photographer, who both invested millions in real estate deals with Yohai.

Some of Yohay's fraud was carried out while he was on bond after pleading guilty in a property fraud case nearly two years ago.

"The defendant has done tremendous damage to a large number of victims," ​​wrote U.S. Attorney Andrew Brown in a September court. Yohai "has shown an almost incredible compulsion to deceive others, to the extent that he could not stop even as he awaits this court's verdict on him in the first case, which strongly suggests that he will continue on his criminal path despite his has been blessed with so many benefits. "

" It's worse that he liked cheating and cheating on others from his hard-earned money, as if he thought real work was just for paties, "Brown added.

Prosecutors, who charged that Yohai's fraud amounted to more than $ 1

3 million, pleaded to 15 years in prison. The verdict that the judge pronounced was considerably shorter, but still long for financial fraud. He ordered a total of $ 6.7 million in restitution.

Yohai & # 39; s sentence is about a year and a half longer than the time his former father-in-law finally received on tax and fraud charges he was convicted of after a jury trial in Virginia last year, as well as two other charges that he pleaded guilty as part of an agreement to avert a second lawsuit in Washington on charges of being an unregistered foreign agent, money laundering and obstruction of justice.

Manafort and Yohai were involved in several real estate projects that involved efforts to build and turn luxury homes in Los Angeles. One of the bank fraud charges accuses the long-time Republican lobbyist and the political consultant was convicted of fraudulent information provided in an attempt to secure a Banc of California loan on real estate where he invested in Yohai.

Manafort and Yohai initially asked the bank for $ 5 million to fund their plan. The bank wound up lending $ 1 million, which the latter voted to return.

Yohai was mentioned at trial, but did not testify. He was not charged in the Virginia case.

While Yohai repeatedly tried to cooperate with Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigator, there is no indication that they were seriously considering using him as a witness. He was not called by any side at Manafort's trial.

However, Yohai allegedly told men trying to sell a home in Los Angeles that he would soon be traveling to Washington to help Mueller's investigation.

"During lunch, Yohai [the men] stated that he" turned the state's evidence "on his father-in-law, Paul Manafort," wrote FBI Special Agent Sherine Ebadi in a court filing. "Yohai made several statements … that he had to go to & # 39; DC & # 39; to meet Special Counsel & # 39; s Office or & # 39; downtown & # 39; to meet & # 39; f. & # 39; "

"I know these statements are false because I was the case counsel for the Special Council case against Manafort," Ebadi added.

Why the Mueller team did not show much interest in Yohai despite his attempts to help them is unclear, but he has Court records indicate that Yohai entered the costly drug treatment program Cottonwood in Arizona at the end of 2016.

Prosecutors allege that after leaving Cottonwood, Yohai deceived fellow drug addicts who paid to live in a "sober living "Homes he established in LA Yohai allegedly took a $ 5,000 deposit from such a man and charged another $ 35,000 a month" for "detox" care that [Yohai] could not and did not provide. "

Yohai has admitted to using cocaine and methamphetamine even while He was jailed earlier this year, after his bond was revoked when the second round of fraud was charged. Prosecutors say he got the drug by arranging small payments from money his mother deposited into a prison account.

Some of his behavior in various scams was bizarre even for a flimsy artist. In one case, he tried to pay a property-related debt to a doctor in Los Angeles by offering the doctor a large bag of marijuana.

Yohai and Manafort's daughter Jessica married in 2013. She filed for divorce in 2017 and last year formally changed her last name from Manafort to Bond – her mother's maid.

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