Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman has cut a “cooperation agreement” with US prosecutors and intends to plead guilty to charges related to his Ukrainian consulting work.

The deal allows Paul Manafort to avoid a second trial that had been scheduled to start next week in Washington.

Manafort was convicted last month of eight financial crimes in a separate trial in Virginia.

Trump Russia Probe ManafortPaul Manafort’s wife Kathleen arrives at federal court in Washington (Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP)

Prosecutor Andrew Weissman said in court on Friday that Manafort had struck a “cooperation agreement.” He did not elaborate on the agreement.

Manafort told the judge he wants to plead guilty.

His second trial would have been related to Ukrainian political consulting work, including failing to register as a foreign agent.

The White House said Manafort’s decision to plead guilty and cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller is “totally unrelated” to the president.

Press secretary Sarah Sanders said: “This had absolutely nothing to do with the President or his victorious 2016 Presidential campaign. It is totally unrelated.”