Now playing
01:39
Why Mueller cares about Manafort & Gates
President Donald Trump talks to the media before boarding Air Force One, Sunday, March 24, 2019, at Palm Beach International Airport, in West Palm Beach, Fla., en route to Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Carolyn Kaster/AP
President Donald Trump talks to the media before boarding Air Force One, Sunday, March 24, 2019, at Palm Beach International Airport, in West Palm Beach, Fla., en route to Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Now playing
01:54
Trump responds to AG summary of Mueller report
Getty Images & AP
Now playing
02:02
WH says Mueller report is 'complete exoneration' of Trump
Pool
Now playing
01:03
CNN reporter prediction: Look for pardons
WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 30:  Rudy Giuliani, former New York City mayor and current lawyer for U.S. President Donald Trump, speaks to members of the media during a White House Sports and Fitness Day at the South Lawn of the White House May 30, 2018 in Washington, DC. President Trump hosted the event to encourage children to participate in sports and make youth sports more accessible to economically disadvantaged students.  (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Alex Wong/Getty Images
WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 30: Rudy Giuliani, former New York City mayor and current lawyer for U.S. President Donald Trump, speaks to members of the media during a White House Sports and Fitness Day at the South Lawn of the White House May 30, 2018 in Washington, DC. President Trump hosted the event to encourage children to participate in sports and make youth sports more accessible to economically disadvantaged students. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Now playing
03:11
Giuliani responds to Mueller report summary
CNN
Now playing
00:51
Wolf Blitzer: Sounds like Russians got what they wanted
AFP & Getty Images
Now playing
03:03
Barr delivers his summary of Mueller report to Congress
toobin 03242019
CNN
toobin 03242019
Now playing
02:42
Toobin: Total vindication of Trump on collusion
CNN
Now playing
01:25
CNN analyst: This is a win for the President
CNN
Now playing
00:57
Nadler willing to take Mueller report to Supreme Court
WASHINGTON - MARCH 09:  F.B.I. Director Robert Mueller speaks at a news conference at the bureau's headquaters March 9, 2007 in Washington, DC. Mueller was responding to a report by the Justice Department inspector general that concluded the FBI had committed 22 violations in its collection of information through the use of national security letters. The letters, which the audit numbered at 47,000 in 2005, allow the agency to collect information like telephone, banking and e-mail records without a judicially approved subpoena.   (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
WASHINGTON - MARCH 09: F.B.I. Director Robert Mueller speaks at a news conference at the bureau's headquaters March 9, 2007 in Washington, DC. Mueller was responding to a report by the Justice Department inspector general that concluded the FBI had committed 22 violations in its collection of information through the use of national security letters. The letters, which the audit numbered at 47,000 in 2005, allow the agency to collect information like telephone, banking and e-mail records without a judicially approved subpoena. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:37
Dems warn of subpoenas to obtain Muller report
CNN
Now playing
01:26
Carl Bernstein on Mueller report: We need every word
Michael Caputo AC360 03222019
CNN
Michael Caputo AC360 03222019
Now playing
02:46
Caputo: Mueller investigation like a proctology exam
Federal Bureau of Investigation(FBI)Director Robert Mueller testifies during a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Committee's Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Subcommittee on Capitol Hill May 16, 2013 in Washington, DC. Muller testified about the FY2014 budget for the FBI as well as the investigation into the recent Boston Marathon bombing and other investigations. AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI        (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images
Federal Bureau of Investigation(FBI)Director Robert Mueller testifies during a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Committee's Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Subcommittee on Capitol Hill May 16, 2013 in Washington, DC. Muller testified about the FY2014 budget for the FBI as well as the investigation into the recent Boston Marathon bombing and other investigations. AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
07:02
Mueller: The most private public figure in Washington
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 19:  White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders speaks to the media after the House of Representatives pass President Trump's tax reform bill, during her daily press briefing at the White House on December 19, 2017 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Mark Wilson/Getty Images North America/Getty Images
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 19: White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders speaks to the media after the House of Representatives pass President Trump's tax reform bill, during her daily press briefing at the White House on December 19, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:26
White House responds to conclusion of Mueller investigation
toobin
toobin
Now playing
01:22
Toobin: This is really good news for Kushner, Trump Jr.
(CNN) —  

Special counsel Robert Mueller believes that Paul Manafort was sharing polling data and discussing Russian-Ukrainian policy with his close Russian-intelligence-linked associate, Konstantin Kilimnik, while he led the Trump presidential campaign, according to parts of a court filing that were meant to be redacted by Manafort’s legal team Tuesday but were released publicly.

Manafort discussed a Ukrainian peace plan with Kilimnik, his lawyers acknowledged. He also shared polling data related to the 2016 presidential campaign with Kilimnik, Manafort’s legal team acknowledges in their court filing.

The details accidentally released Tuesday are the closest public assertion yet in the Mueller cases of coordination between a Trump campaign official and the Russian government, as Kilimnik is believed to be linked to Russian military intelligence. It’s a major acknowledgment from the Mueller team that their investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election is finding potential contact between at least one Trump campaign official and the Kremlin.

The Ukraine peace plan that they discussed likely would have dealt with Russian intervention in the region. At around the same time, Russian government operatives were allegedly hacking Democratic computers to help Trump and orchestrating a social media propaganda scheme to sway voters against Trump’s electoral opponents.

Kilimnik has long been suspected to be central to Mueller’s investigation into Russian influence in the 2016 presidential election. The revelations in the court filing Tuesday seem to confirm that.

Manafort’s filing also acknowledges he met with Kilimnik in Madrid. Later Tuesday, Manafort spokesman Jason Maloni said that meeting was in January or February 2017, after Trump was elected. There are two known meetings during the campaign between Manafort and Kilimnik.

The sentences revealed in the filing certify for the first time Mueller’s interest in Kilimnik’s political actions during the campaign. Manafort has not been charged with crimes related to his work for Trump. Kilimnik only faces a charge from Mueller related to allegedly helping Manafort tamper with witnesses following his arrest.

Kilimnik has not entered a plea in US courts, and Manafort has pleaded guilty to the witness tampering allegation and has been convicted on several lobbying-related financial crimes.

Prosecutors have previously said they believe Kilimnik has ties to the military intelligence unit the GRU, which allegedly hacked the Democratic Party and leaked damaging emails while Manafort ran Trump’s campaign operation. Manafort and Kilimnik have been close colleagues for years.

The errant admissions in Manafort’s court filing also acknowledge that a person wanted to use his name when meeting President Donald Trump.

Errant redactions

The revelations come in Manafort’s written response to accusations that Manafort lied to Mueller’s team during cooperation interviews. Those portions had been redacted given Mueller’s sensitivities toward ongoing investigations, Manafort’s lawyers said, but the redactions were able to be read in the document filed with the federal court online.

Manafort says he did not intentionally mislead Mueller. His legal team offered explanations of human nature as the reasons for his misstatements. He also tried to help the investigation in several ways, such as by handing over his computers, email accounts and passwords to Mueller, he says in a new filing.

Previously, the special counsel’s office outlined five areas in which they believe Manafort lied, including about his contact with Kilimnik, who is of interest to the Mueller investigation, and about his communication with White House officials as recently as last year, but redacted some details of what they know and how they know it.

Mueller’s accusation that Manafort lied already pulled into question the former campaign chairman’s possibility for leniency in the justice system and his usefulness to federal authorities – though it raised the possibility President Donald Trump could see Manafort as an ally and offer him a pardon.

The special counsel’s office declined to comment Tuesday.

Manafort’s attorneys did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday about the filing error, though they corrected it in the court’s official record.

Manafort’s situation

Manafort has been in jail since June, after prosecutors accused him of attempting to sway witness’ testimony against him while he was under house arrest. Manafort was convicted by a jury in a Virginia federal court for eight tax and bank fraud charges. He will be sentenced for those crimes in early February.

Days before his second trial in a DC federal court was set to begin, Manafort flipped — admitting he masterminded an illegal scheme to lobby for Ukrainians and launder the revenue. In return, prosecutors said they would consider asking the judge for leniency at his eventual sentencing.

The plea deal instantly turned him into the person whom many believed would be the Mueller investigation’s star cooperator.

As part of his guilty plea, Manafort agreed to sit for interviews with investigators. It was during some of these nine sessions, in September and October, that prosecutors believe he lied to them.

Manafort initially indicated that he would push back on the investigators’ lying accusation, because he believed he had given them truthful information during cooperation.

The judge in DC federal court who has overseen his case, Amy Berman Jackson, gave him the opportunity to respond before she would hold a hearing about the facts of the situation.

That hearing is currently scheduled for later this month. Jackson is set to sentence Manafort for conspiracy and witness tampering charges in March.

For the two charges he currently faces in DC federal court, Manafort could receive 17 to 22 years in prison, his plea agreement says.

He has been wheelchair bound for months, his lawyers say, because of gout, and has been kept essentially in solitary confinement for his own safety.