Published: Thu, July 12, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Prosecutors: Paul Manafort Says He's Being Treated Like a 'VIP' in Jail

Prosecutors: Paul Manafort Says He's Being Treated Like a 'VIP' in Jail

United States should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russian Federation probe MORE is asking a federal court in Virginia for 100 blank subpoenas in the case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortManafort fails in second bid to suppress storage-unit evidence Judge orders Manafort be moved to jail closer to DC Giuliani worked for foreign clients while serving as Trump's attorney: report MORE.

Prosecutors say Manafort has a personal telephone that he uses to prepare for trial with lawyers. 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 the filing.

Because of this, Manafort has asked for his July 25 trial to be delayed. He had asked for a postponement until after a separate trial in Washington, D.C., where he faces similar charges.

Not long after Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA) Judge T.S. Ellis III had some stern words for Paul Manafort's lawyers and ordered the defendant to be transferred to the Alexandria Detention Center, Manafort's team has made a decision to fight back on another front. They added that Manafort did not raise questions about his access to his attorneys or documents to prepare his defense.

He has a personal laptop on which he can review materials from the case and access to his own workspace to meet with his legal team, they said.

In their court filing Wednesday, prosecutors sought to pick apart Manafort's arguments that he needs to delay the trial because of his jail conditions.

Prosecutors also say that Manafort is working around prison restrictions on sending and receiving emails.

"In order to exchange emails, he reads and composes emails on a second laptop that is shuttled in and out of the facility by his team", prosecutors explained.

Judge T.S. Ellis has not yet ruled whether he will postpone the trial or allow Manafort to change venue to Roanoke. "Manafort is also not required to wear a prison uniform".

"When the team takes the laptop from the jail, it reconnects to the Internet and Manafort's emails are transmitted", they wrote.

"Manafort told the person on the call that, "I've gone through all the discovery now", according to the filing. The trial in Virginia is scheduled to begin later this month, while the D.C. trial is slated for September. Ellis said he made that decision in response to Manafort's complaints about the difficulty in getting ready for the trial.

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.

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