Published: Wed, August 15, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Manafort's defense rests after calling no witnesses

Manafort's defense rests after calling no witnesses

So Ellis asked Manafort today if he had any intention of testifying.

Their testimony, accompanied by a lengthy paper trail, aimed to support the government's allegations that Manafort hid millions of dollars of income from Ukraine from the IRS in secret offshore bank accounts, and then lied to US lenders to get bank loans when that revenue dried up.

Prosecutors rested their case on Monday, closing two weeks of a testimony in which they introduced a trove of documentary evidence as they sought to prove Manafort's guilt on 18 separate criminal counts. On the stand, Gates admitted to a host of offences, including stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from Manafort's bank accounts and concealing $3 million of his own income from tax authorities. Those witnesses said the bank chief executive officer, Stephen Calk, overrode red flags at the bank.

Paul Manafort, President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, leaves the Federal District Court after a hearing, in Washington, DC, May 23, 2018. Assistant U.S. Attorney Uzo Asonye, standing, gave the government's opening in Manafort's trial on tax evasion and bank fraud.

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Manafort, who has watched silently as the case against him was argued in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia, was asked by Judge T.S. Ellis whether he wanted to testify.

On Tuesday, the defense rested its case after opting not to present any witnesses.

Brennan also testified that he rated Manafort's loan application a "4", the highest level of risk the bank would consider because he was under pressure from Calk to keep his assessment in an acceptable range.

The jury heard from a former partner and a former accountant on how the long-time political consultant doctored his accounts and laundered tens of millions of dollars through offshore banks.

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Jurors were sent home Tuesday as both sides hash out the judge's instructions on the charges.

Manafort joined the Trump campaign in March 2016 and was elevated to campaign chair in May.

The case against Manafort does not relate to any allegations of Russian election interference or possible coordination with the Trump campaign, the main thrust of Mueller's investigation.

The defense for Manafort rested Tuesday without calling any witnesses.

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