Top Mueller cooperator Rick Gates continues to cooperate with several investigations ( www.vox.com )

Gates had high-level jobs on the Trump campaign and Trump’s inaugural committee.

One of special counsel Robert Mueller’s top cooperators isn’t done cooperating with the government.

Rick Gates, the longtime right-hand-man to Paul Manafort who had high-level roles on the Trump campaign and inauguration, is not yet ready for sentencing, Mueller’s team said Friday — because Gates “continues to cooperate with respect to several ongoing investigations.”

Gates struck a plea deal with Mueller’s team in February 2018 and testified against Manafort at his trial in August 2018.

What’s left tantalizingly unclear, as ever, is what’s going on with Mueller’s own investigation. For weeks, it’s been rumored in Washington that the special counsel is close to wrapping up — but no Mueller report has yet materialized.

However, Gates’s continued cooperation doesn’t necessarily tell us anything about the state of the special counsel probe because he isn’t only cooperating with Mueller.

There are at least two known investigations, beyond Mueller’s own, that Gates is believed to be cooperating with: an investigation into the Trump inauguration’s money and an investigation into lobbyists’ and lawyers’ unregistered work for Ukraine.

Since both of those investigations appear to remain active, it makes perfect sense that Gates isn’t yet ready for sentencing. Gates could also be providing assistance to other investigations we don’t know about.

Who is Rick Gates?

Basically, Gates is Paul Manafort’s protégé and right-hand man, who was at his side during his past decade of lobbying and foreign work before going with him to join the Trump campaign.

Gates is two decades younger than Manafort and joined his firm in 2006, eventually managing much of its Eastern Europe portfolio and often

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