Manafort Judge: The Jail Handles 'Terrorists, Spies and Traitors'
13 July, 2018, 00:43 | Author: Roderick Gutierrez
Ellis, a 77-year-old Ronald Reagan appointee, expressed skepticism that Mueller's team actually cares about the former Trump campaign chairman's alleged crimes, saying, "I don't see what relation this indictment has with what the special counsel is authorized to investigate".
Judge Ellis addressed Manafort's complaints about location by ordering his transfer to an Alexandria prison.
The filing said that Manafort had made more than 300 phone calls in the last three weeks and even "developed a workaround" to outsmart a ban on inmates sending or receiving emails at Northern Neck regional jail in Warsaw, Virginia.
On Wednesday, Ellis denied Manafort's request and ordered him moved to the Alexandria Detention Center, rejecting the notion that he would not be safe there. According to Northern Neck Superintendent Ted Hull, in the so-called VIP section, there is "no qualitative or quantitative difference" between cells and that Manafort has access to the same privileges as other VIP inmates.
Manafort asked to delay the trial in Alexandria, Virginia, until after he's been tried in Washington where he's accused of failing to register in the U.S.as an agent of Ukraine and of laundering millions of dollars.
The prosecutors' filing says Manafort has everything he needs to prepare for the trial, including his own phone and computer. Here the judge will also consider a request to have the trial moved to another city - Manafort argues he can not get a fair trial in Alexandria due to the publicity of his case. They also said Manafort has said in the calls that he is able to visit with his lawyers every day and that he has "all my files like I would at home".
Manafort stayed in a larger private chambers that included his own bathroom, shower and workspace, and he could use a phone and laptop with an extension cord.
Defense lawyers, in response, said the government had selected "snippets" of the conversations to support their version of events. They objected to the transfer, arguing that "after further reflection, issues of distance and inconvenience must yield to concerns about his safety and, more importantly, the challenges he will face in adjusting to a new place of confinement" only two weeks before trial.
They said Mueller's team 'does not pause to consider the reasons a detained defendant might have to make his situation sound better when speaking with concerned friends and family'.
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