Manafort Jury Cannot Reach Consensus on All Counts
The jury in the financial fraud trial of former Trump campaign Chairman Paul Manafort indicated in a note Tuesday that it is struggling to reach a unanimous verdict on all 18 tax- and bank-fraud charges.
The note asked what to do if the jury of 6 men and 6 women cannot reach a consensus for a single count in the case.
Jurors posed the question to US District Judge T.S. Ellis III on their 4th day of deliberations. They also said they would need a new verdict form.
Prosecutors say Mr. Manafort hid tens of millions of dollars in foreign income from Ukraine. They also say he lied on loan applications to obtain millions more to maintain a lavish lifestyle.
Mr. Manafort’s attorneys called no witnesses, arguing prosecutors failed to meet their burden of proof.
The trial is the first courtroom test of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe, though the case does not involve allegations of Russian election interference.
Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort has a better chance of being found not guilty in his current trial than the next one because of the jury pool, attorney Alan Dershowitz said in a TV interview Tuesday,
“Everybody reads tea leaves, nobody really knows,” Professor Dershowitz said in regard to the time its taken the jury to deliberate. “It could be they’re going over every one of the elements of all the crimes very carefully.
Professor Dershowitz went on to say Mr. Manafort has a better chance of getting off during this current trial, rather than the 2nd trial slated to be held in Washington, DC, next month.
Note: The fundamental point here is that Robert Mueller, the special counsel, and his very leftist staff did not have authority to indict Paul Manafort. That is not Mr. Mueller’s mandate.”