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Trump's ex-campaign chief Manafort to face two trials this year

10 March 2018, 01:08 | Myrtle Vega

Paul Manafort set to make first appearance in Virginia court on tax and fraud charges

Manafort’s longtime business associate and former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates pleaded guilty to lying to Mueller’s team last month

The protester, standing outside of a federal court building in Alexandria, Va., held a sign that read "blood money" and shouted "Traitor!" as Manafort left the courthouse, NBC News reports.

For the Virginia case, Manafort will be fitted with a second electronic monitoring bracelet (he is already wearing one related to the D.C. case) and will be allowed to meet with lawyers, attend church services and make emergency medical trips as needed.

Manafort's lawyer, Kevin Downing, had asked for a trial date in November, citing the complexity of the case. The indictment against Manafort, 68, comes as a result of Mueller's investigation into the links between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign to influence the presidential election, but it is not related to Manafort's activities between May and August 2016 as the mogul's campaign chairman.

A trial was set for July 10.

On Thursday, Andrew Weissmann, Mueller's deputy, told the judge that prosecutors preferred to move forward on the Virginia case first, estimating that it would take between eight to 10 days to complete, and require up to 25 government witnesses.

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U.S. Senior Judge T.S. Ellis III picked the July date, though he did not foreclose the possibility of granting an extension to the defence if warranted. That trial begins in September.

At Thursday's court hearing, Ellis questioned whether a 32-count indictment was overkill and should be simplified for a jury.

Former manager of Donald Trump's presidential campaign Paul Manafort has once again pleaded not guilty to charges filed against him by US Department of Justice (DOJ) special counsel Robert Mueller. If convicted, Manafort will face up to 305 years in jail.

Although he's been under indictment in Washington since October, Manafort was recently hit with new charges there, too, including an allegation he secretly recruited and funded a group of former European politicians to lobby in the United States on behalf of Ukraine.

In a February indictment, Mueller accused Manafort and his longtime partner Rick Gates of making "tens of millions of dollars" while working for Ukraine.



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