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Trump's former campaign chief Manafort reportedly owed millions to pro-Russia interests

  • Shell firms linked to former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort owed as much as $17 million to pro-Russian interests, the New York Times reported

Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort owed as much as $17 million to pro-Russian interests before he joined the president's election campaign, the New York Times reported on Wednesday.

The funds were owed by shell companies linked to Manafort's business ventures in Ukraine, where he worked for the Party of Regions, a Ukrainian political faction, the Times said, citing financial records.

Paul Manafort of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's staff listens during a round table discussion on security at Trump Tower in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., August 17, 2016.
Carlo Allegri | Reuters
Paul Manafort of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's staff listens during a round table discussion on security at Trump Tower in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., August 17, 2016.

The party, which boasted close ties to Moscow, was in power under former president Viktor Yanukovych.

This isn't the first time Manafort's debts have been publicized. In 2015, Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska claimed he was owed $19 million by Manafort and his partners regarding a Ukrainian business investment.

A spokesman for Manafort, Jason Maloni, told The New York Times that "Manafort is not indebted to Deripaska or the Party of Regions, nor was he at the time he began working for the Trump campaign."

Read the full story from the New York Times.