Manafort Is Transferred From Jail Where He Was Treated Like a ‘VIP’

Paul Manafort says he's being treated 'like a VIP' in jail

One trial is set for July 25 in Alexandria, Virginia, and the second case in Washington, D.C., has a September 17 trial date. Still, when Alexandria federal judge T.S. Ellis III ordered him transferred to a facility closer to the courthouse, the former worldwide political consultant rebelled, arguing he was better off staying put. He told people over a recorded phone line from the jail that he was being treated like a VIP and had reviewed all of the evidence before the trial, prosecutors said. While Manafort was not required to wear a jail-issued uniform at Northern Neck Regional Jail where he was being housed until Thursday morning, Bertsch says all inmates at the jail in Alexandria are required to wear the dark green jail jumpsuits used at that facility. In the last three weeks, Manafort has had more than 100 phone calls with his attorneys, and another 200 calls with other individuals, according to Wednesday's filing.

"Contrary to Manafort's assertions about his jail conditions, Manafort is in a private unit in which he can review materials and prepare for trial", prosecutors said.

"Manafort also possesses a personal laptop that he is permitted to use in his unit", prosecutors wrote.

The special counsel's lawyers reported that the jail in Warsaw doesn't allow prisoners to send emails but that Manafort "appears to have developed a workaround" by reading and drafting messages on a second laptop that's brought in and out of the jail by his legal team.

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Paul Manafort's complaints about his life in jail backfired spectacularly Wednesday.

Manafort has been held there since June 15, when a judge in Washington, D.C., ordered him detained, partly because of new charges that he had attempted to tamper with witnesses.

In a rebuttal, Manafort's lawyers said the effort put into monitoring their client's phone calls showed that Mueller had "unlimited resources" and accused his office of choosing conversations "to support its version of events".

"Defendant's access to counsel and his ability to prepare for trial trumps his personal comfort", Ellis said.

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Prosecutors working for Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller, however, have signaled they are ready to start their case in Virginia on July 25 as planned.

Prosecutors working for the special counsel in the Russian Federation inquiry, Robert Mueller, suggested to Ellis this week that Manafort was trying to delay the Virginia case so that he would face the charges in Washington first.

"If five lawyers take up five rooms, then you wait in line for someone to finish", defense attorney Marina Medvin said.If they take up the entire time slot, then you're out of luck - you need to leave and come back and hopefully be first in line".

Manafort's house arrest was revoked last month amid witness tampering allegations and he was booked into the Northern Neck Regional Jail in Warsaw, Va. Besides the charges of financial fraud in Virginia, he faces charges in Washington, including violating federal lobbying laws. He has pleaded not guilty in both cases.

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But Manafort's legal team didn't complain until the last minute, the USA said. Specifically, Manafort was charged with multiple counts relating to money laundering and bank fraud. But the judges overseeing both cases against Manafort recently struck down those arguments.

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