Paul John Manafort Jr. (born April 1, 1949) is an American lawyer, lobbyist and political consultant. He served as campaign manager for the presidential campaign of Donald Trump in 2016. He was previously an adviser to the U.S. presidential campaigns of Republicans Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and Bob Dole. In 1980 Manafort co-founded the Washington, D.C.-based lobbying firm Black, Manafort & Stone, along with principals Charles R. Black Jr., and Roger J. Stone. In 1984 it was renamed Black, Manafort, Stone and Kelly (BMSK) & associates, after Peter G. Kelly was recruited.
Manafort often lobbied on behalf of controversial foreign leaders such as Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych; Ferdinand Marcos, former dictator of the Philippines; Mobutu Sese Seko, dictator of the former Democratic Republic of the Congo; and Angolan guerrilla leader Jonas Savimbi. Lobbying to serve the interests of foreign governments requires registration with the Justice Department under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA); however, as of June 2, 2017, Manafort had not registered. On June 27 he retroactively registered as a foreign agent.
Manafort is under investigation by multiple federal agencies. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has had an active criminal investigation on him since 2014 regarding business dealings while he was lobbying for Ukraine. He may also be a subject of an FBI counterintelligence probe looking into possible collusion between the Russian government and associates of Trump to influence the 2016 presidential election. Wikipedia