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Ken Starr says Paul Manafort deal a big win for Robert Mueller

Former independent counsel Ken Starr on Monday said that former Trump campaign chairman Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortManafort appears in wheelchair at court hearing Manafort to be sentenced in Virginia in February Former FBI agent sentenced to 4 years in jail for leaking to reporter MORE's guilty plea and agreement to cooperate in the Russia probe is a significant victory for special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE

"We don't know what Paul Manafort knows, but it's obviously a great triumph for Bob Mueller," Starr told Hill.TV's Krystal Ball and Buck Sexton on "Rising." 

"The last thing I think he [Manafort] and his team wanted to do is have yet another trial, and so they've saved resources and the like," he continued. 

"They got his full cooperation. I loved the adverbs that were used in the cooperation agreement. 'Fully,' 'cooperative,' 'truthful.' It is 'we want the truth and nothing but the truth.' "

Prosecutors reached a plea agreement with Manafort on Friday, in which he pleaded guilty to two federal charges and agreed to cooperate with Mueller's probe into Russian election meddling. 

The agreement states that the former Trump campaign chairman must cooperate “fully, truthfully, completely, and forthrightly” with the Justice Department. 

Manafort could face between 17 to 22 years in prison for the crimes and fines of $40,000 to $400,000.

A jury in a separate trial in Alexandria, Va., last month convicted Manafort on eight counts of bank and tax fraud charges. 

Starr worked on the 1998 GOP-led probe of former President Clinton, who was impeached in the House but not convicted in the Senate on charges of obstruction of justice and perjury. 

He is promoting his new book "Contempt: A Memoir of the Clinton Investigation," which details his experience in that probe. 

— Julia Manchester