y Mueller’s moves send message to other potential targets: Beware, I’m coming

“Who else is cooperating that we don’t know about? That’s what people in the White House need to be worried about.’’

.. Toomey called the indictment of Manafort and Gates “extraordinarily intricate’’ and said it will put “enormous pressure’’ on the defendants to cooperate

.. The indictment even seems to go out of its way to kneecap a standard defense argument in such cases — that the defendant got bad advice from his accountant. The indictment charges that Manafort wrote specifically to his accountant that he did not have foreign bank accounts.

.. Nick Akerman, a former assistant special Watergate prosecutor, said the court filings “all spell bad news for President Trump.’’

Akerman said he could not see any defense to the Manafort indictment.

“He has no choice but to plead guilty. That’s what the indictment says to me,’’ he said. “The only defense that you’ve got is to go in there and start singing like a canary to avoid jail time. And once he starts singing, one of the tunes is bound to be Donald Trump.’’

.. What’s striking about the indictment, Nanavati said, is the number of people who worked for Manafort — accountants, lawyers and others — who provided key evidence against him.

.. And unidentified lobbying firms indirectly hired by Manafort, he said, “are in significant trouble’’ because of the written exchanges referenced in the indictment alleging that some people at the firms were aware that Manafort was lying about their work together.

.. Nanavati said a key change in U.S. tax enforcement that began in 2008 — going after foreign bank accounts controlled by Americans — probably played an important role in the case against Manafort.

Before the Justice Department started cracking through the layers of Swiss banking secrecy that hid Americans’ accounts in 2008, he said, the requirement on Americans to declare foreign bank accounts was on the books but “basically, nobody ever did it, and almost no one ever got prosecuted for it. That changed in 2008, and tax return preparers started asking.’’