Judge In Manafort Trial Receives Threats; Media Tries To Reveal Juror's Identities

Aaron Brown
August 21, 2018

Judge T.S. Ellis III sent the jury back Thursday shortly before 10 a.m.to consider the 18 counts of tax and bank fraud levied against Manafort. "I imagine they would, too", he said when explaining why he doesn't intend to make jurors' names public at the end of the trial.

The jury in the financial fraud trial of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort has asked to keep deliberating into the evening.

Here's the thing: This Manafort trial - as Trump likes to remind anyone who asks - has zero to do with the time he spent as the head of Trump's 2016 campaign. "I think it's a very sad day for our country", Trump said.

"When you look at what's going on there, I think it's a very sad day for our country", he said. "And I think it's very sad what they've done to Paul Manafort". But you know what?

In a break with convention, Trump weighed in on the trial on Friday, calling the case against Manafort at the federal court in Alexandria, Virginia, "very sad" and lauding his former associate as a "very good person".

This is the first major courtroom test of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian contacts with the Trump campaign. In all, he faces 18 felony counts of tax evasion and bank fraud.

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Manafort faces the prospect of spending the rest of his life in prison if convicted.

The judge said he would not be revealing the jurors' names because of his safety concerns.

Listen to what else Vance had to say about Trump's "message" to Manafort in the video up top.

Mr Manafort stands accused of hiding $15 million from the taxman and fraudulently obtaining millions more in bank loans. They say Manafort declared only some of his foreign income on his federal income tax returns and repeatedly failed to disclose millions of dollars that streamed into the U.S.to pay for luxury items, services and property.

"The fact that they were quiet on Friday indicated that they were working hard and working well together, and there was no dissension", said Wu, who is no longer involved in the case and said he was speaking from knowledge of the publicly available evidence. While certainly risky, this isn't an uncommon defense tactic since it allows defense counsel to concentrate the jury's attention on the question of whether or not the prosecution has proven their case beyond a reasonable doubt. "Put it out of your mind until Monday", Ellis told them.

Manafort's fate now sits with the jury, and after two days of deliberations, anti-Trump media outlets like CNN are becoming concerned Manafort could be acquitted, which would be a major blow to Mueller's credibility and his ability to remove Trump from office - an outcome the establishment media are desperate to orchestrate.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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