On Rick Gates’ Expansive Cooperation

Much has been made from something in a status update in Rick Gates’ case the other day. In asking for a two month delay on sentencing (the last one was for three months), the parties revealed that Gates is cooperating on “several ongoing investigations.”

1. The parties previously filed a Joint Status Report on August 10, 2018 and proposed to send an ensuing report within ninety days and no later than November 10, 2018. To date, the status of this matter has not changed substantially since the August report, as defendant Gates continues to cooperate with respect to several ongoing investigations, and accordingly the parties do not believe it is appropriate to commence the sentencing process at this time.

2. The parties respectfully request that they provide a joint status report within sixty days, no later than January 15, 2019.

So he’s working on more than Mueller’s investigation (if he’s even still focusing on that; I’ve seen no report of him appearing at Mueller’s office).

That actually shouldn’t be that big a surprise. As part of his plea agreement, Sam Patten — who like Gates had close ties to Konstantin Kilimnik — is required to cooperate with “this Office, the Special Counsel’s Office, and other law enforcement authorities.” That means Patten is, at a minimum, cooperating with Mueller and a separate investigation out of the DC US Attorney’s Office (with whom he signed his plea). Plus, when Kyle Freeny left Mueller’s office last month, she may have brought some part of the money laundering investigation Mueller was doing with her; one obvious candidate might be Trump’s Inauguration Pay-to-Play.

5 replies
  1. Kevin Finnerty says:

    Further on down the road, it will be interesting to see how many investigations were spun off of the Mueller inquiry. Seems like a target rich environment.

    A couple unrelated items that caught my attention today:

    I wonder if Trump’s reference to the “inner workings” of Mueller’s investigation is a sign that Whitaker has been briefed and has relayed information to Trump.

    There’s an interesting Politico story that analyzes the DC docket and finds that 53 indictments filed during 2018 are still under seal, including several that were filed around the Pineda, Van Der Zwaan, and Russian national indictments/plea deals. Obviously, it’s possible that all 53 are completely unrelated to Mueller. But the temporal proximity is interesting. The article also notes there were 11 sealed indictments filed between Labor Day and Election Day.

    • JD12 says:

      I wonder if Trump’s reference to the “inner workings” of Mueller’s investigation is a sign that Whitaker has been briefed and has relayed information to Trump.

      At first I thought that was Trump’s reason for putting him there. Firing Mueller seemed too obvious and possible career suicide since most Republicans are strongly opposed to it.

      Trump fears justice, but he also can’t stand being unable to dominate the narrative. House Dems are about to gain access to a lot of information they don’t have yet, so Trump is desperate to frame things in his favor while he has the chance.

      • Anon says:

        I don’t believe that that comment proves that Trump has been briefed. He may have been of course and Whitaker does seem the type of guy who would immediately use his access to please his boss. But he may also be the type to pass on a false narrative if that was better for him. In either case Trump would still be motivated to say that the internals are a mess because the last thing that he would want is for Muller to be competent, or for the rest of the world to believe that Muller is competent. If he is then Trump has real problems.

        • JD12 says:

          That’s true. If he truly had access to the “inner workings” even he’s too stupid to ruin it with a tweet. He’s more likely to pretend he has access when really he doesn’t.

  2. Kate says:

    Restricting the timeline of what Mueller can investigate, ie only pre-election for instance, may be Whitaker’s role. No transition period, no post inauguration. That’s a problem for obvious reasons.

    I could be out in left field here of course.

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