Trump Defends Manafort, a ‘Very Good Person’ Whose Trial Is ‘Very Sad’

Erika Holt
August 20, 2018

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On Friday, US President Donald Trump said Mr Manafort was a "very good person", describing the trial as "very sad".

The revelation made by Ellis was used as an argument to respond to the petition by media outlets to disclose the names and some personal information of the 12 jury members, a petition that was rejected by the judge on security grounds.

"I had no idea this case would excite these emotions ..."

He will also not release the names of jurors at the trial's conclusion because he fears for their safety.

They are probing whether Trump associates conspired with Russian Federation to help Trump win the White House and whether Trump, as president, obstructed justice by trying to thwart the investigation. "I think it's a very sad day for our country", the President said at the White House. Asonye "turned to the reporter with a smile", the Times reports, and said, "Sorry, I can't talk to you". But you know what? A Manafort conviction could also boost Mueller's position as he negotiates with Trump's lawyers over a potential interview.

The trial of former Trump presidential campaign manager Paul Manafort will continue next week after the judge dismissed jurors early Friday before they could issue a verdict.

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Manafort joined the Trump campaign in March 2016 and served as its chairman from June to August of that year - a period that included the Republican National Convention, where Trump officially became the party's nominee for president.

That the jurors gave the judge their questions at the end of the day as opposed to at various intervals before suggests cohesion because they were able to draft the questions, set them aside, and move on to other matters throughout the day, Litman said. One charge, for example, is that Manafort hid some of the money he earned from Ukraine in foreign accounts in Cyprus, which he used to pay for $6 million in USA real estate purchases as well as other luxuries to support his lavish lifestyle - in an elaborate scheme to avoid paying US taxes.

Manafort faces the prospect of spending the rest of his life in prison if convicted. "I think instead he's engaged in a campaign strategically created to communicate to some of his former friends like Paul Manafort, like Cohen, and in essence dangle pardons on Twitter". A spokeswoman for the U.S. Marshals Service did not immediately comment. If word about Trump's comments gets out to a member of the jury, which has not been sequestered, there's "great risk of prejudicing the jury".

The startling revelation came as the jury deliberated for its second day.

The verdict could have major political consequences for Mueller's probe into whether Trump's campaign helped Russian Federation interfere with the 2016 presidential election.

On Friday, he accused Mueller of having "a lot of conflicts", but said the special counsel should be allowed to finish a report on his investigation.

Judge T.S. Ellis III sent jurors home around 5 p.m. Friday.

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