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Former Manafort associate facing extradition to the U.S. hires legal team with ties to Trump

One of Paul Manafort's former business partners, billionaire Ukrainian energy magnate Dmitry Firtash, has added two lawyers to his team, and their faces are very familiar to avid Fox News viewers.

Firtash has hired Victoria Toensing and Joseph diGenova, a husband and wife who frequently pop up on the network in support of President Trump, Bloomberg reports. They were both vocal critics of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, and were briefly hired by Trump last year to join his legal team working on special counsel matters. Shortly after they signed on, Trump's attorney Jay Sekulow said that due to conflicts, they were being dropped, but that did "not prevent them from assisting the president in other legal matters."

The Justice Department has been trying to extradite Firtash to Chicago for several years; in 2013, he was charged after allegedly bribing officials in India to get access to titanium mines in the country, and in June, Austria's Supreme Court ruled the extradition could go through.

Before Manafort was Trump's campaign manager, he joined forces with Firtash and Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska to buy Manhattan's Drake Hotel in 2008. The plan was to turn the property into a luxury building, but this never materialized. Manafort was indicted as part of the special counsel's investigation, and Firtash's lawyer Dan Webb has said his client did not cooperate with Mueller's probe. Manafort is now in prison, after being found guilty of fraud and other charges.