It alleges that Craig misled investigators about lobbying efforts undertaken by his former law firm regarding the firm's work on behalf of former Ukrainian president Victor Yunukovich, in violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA).
The charges against him stemmed from the investigation of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Craig left the courtroom without comment for booking by the U.S. Marshals Service and later, D.C. Police, as required for federal defendants.
At the time he did the work, Craig no longer worked for the Obama administration and instead was a corporate lawyer at a prestigious law firm, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. His attorneys, in a separate statement, said the U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan had already investigated the matter and declined to prosecute.
He pleaded guilty to violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act for lobbying on behalf of a Ukrainian political party.
On Friday morning, President Trump used his Twitter account to inform his almost 60 million followers about a story he suggested the "corrupt" media is deliberately downplaying: the indictment of one of former President Obama's top legal advisers, Gregory B. Craig. John Edwards and James Cartwright, the former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who was charged in a leaks investigation.
The New York Times reported the project was directed to the firm by Manafort, who was a political consultant in the region at the time.
The work that drew the Justice Department's attention occurred in 2012, when Craig and Skadden were hired by the Ukrainian government to write a report on the prosecution of Yulia Tymoshenko, a former Ukrainian prime minister. The law firm that he is associated with paid a fine of $4.6 million dollars, which was essentially what they got paid for the report.
Under US law, all lobbyists for foreign governments must register with the department.
Greg Craig indicted over Ukrainian government connections; Mike Emanuel has the details. They acknowledged that Craig spoke to reporters about the report but denied it was part of a public relations campaign that would run afoul of FARA.
"I don't want to register as a foreign agent under FARA", Craig allegedly wrote to a fellow partner.
Before Craig's indictment, the recent charges brought in cases initiated by Mueller had accused people of failing to disclose their lobbying work.