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Manafort loses bid to stay in ‘VIP’ jail, could face evidence from 1980s

(Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump’s former marketing campaign supervisor Paul Manafort might face evidence at trial about alleged wrongdoing in the 1980s and misplaced a bid to stay at a jail the place he mentioned he was being handled like a “VIP,” courtroom papers on Wednesday confirmed.

FILE PHOTO: Former Trump marketing campaign supervisor Paul Manafort arrives for arraignment on a 3rd superseding indictment towards him by Special Counsel Robert Mueller on fees of witness tampering, at U.S. District Court in Washington, U.S. June 15, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/File Photo

The developments got here as Manafort will get nearer to two trials the place he’ll defend himself towards plenty of fees ranging from financial institution fraud to failing to register as a overseas agent for lobbying work for pro-Russia politicians in Ukraine.

Manafort’s prosecution arose out of U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into attainable collusion between Russia and Trump’s 2016 presidential marketing campaign. One trial is ready for July 25 in Alexandria, Virginia, and the second case in Washington, D.C., has a Sept. 17 trial date.

Judge T.S. Ellis, who’s overseeing the Alexandria case, ordered a listening to for Tuesday to weigh motions by Manafort to transfer the primary trial to a extra Trump-friendly space of Virginia and to postpone it till after the Washington trial was completed.

In a submitting to Ellis on Wednesday, Mueller’s prosecutors laid out their case for no delay. Contrary to Manafort’s assertions, the prosecutors argued that his jail, whereas situated two hours from Washington, had supplied him with ample entry to his attorneys and had not hindered his preparation for trial.

Far from being restrictive, prosecutors mentioned Manafort had been given a private phone in his cell, which he used for greater than 300 calls with attorneys and others over the previous three weeks, and located a workaround to the jail’s ban on e mail.

Prosecutors additionally cited taped cellphone calls from jail in which Manafort remarked that he was being handled like a “VIP” and had entry to “all my files like I would at home.”

Manafort was additionally afforded his personal toilet, bathe and workspace, in accordance to the courtroom submitting by Mueller’s workplace.

In a rebuttal, Manafort’s attorneys mentioned the hassle put into monitoring their shopper’s cellphone calls confirmed that Mueller had “unlimited resources” and accused his workplace of selecting conversations “to support its version of events.”

On Tuesday, Judge T.S. Ellis sought to tackle Manafort’s grievance concerning the remoteness of the jail by ordering him moved from the present facility in Warsaw, Virginia, to a jail in Alexandria nearer to his attorneys and his house.

Manafort responded by asking that he be allowed to stay in Warsaw, citing considerations about security and “the challenges he will face in adjusting to a new place of confinement” two weeks earlier than trial.

On Wednesday, Ellis denied Manafort’s request and ordered him moved to the Alexandria Detention Center, rejecting the notion that he wouldn’t be protected there. The Alexandria jail had expertise with high-profile defendants “including foreign and domestic terrorists, spies and traitors,” Ellis wrote.

Also on Wednesday, Mueller’s workplace filed a movement in the Washington case notifying the courtroom of its intent to current evidence at trial a couple of Justice Department inspection into Manafort’s lobbying actions in the 1980’s.

According to the movement, the inspection discovered eighteen cases of lobbying and public relations actions that ought to have been disclosed to the Justice Department beneath the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), amongst different allegations.

The omissions included lobbying by Manafort a couple of “Jerusalem Bill” and a “Saudi Arms Package”, the movement mentioned.

The evidence can be used to present that Manafort had data concerning the disclosure guidelines beneath FARA and that it was not a easy mistake that he didn’t register for his work for pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine.

Reporting by Nathan Layne in Washington; Editing by Grant McCool, Toni Reinhold

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