Manafort Case Goes Forward After DC Judge Denies Dismissal Bid

Manafort Case Goes Forward After DC Judge Denies Dismissal Bid

Manafort Case Goes Forward After DC Judge Denies Dismissal Bid

Judge refuses to toss Manafort charges; another...

Jay Goldberg, the attorney who represented President Donald Trump for nearly two decades, doesn't think Rudy Giuliani is fit to be handling the legal team tasked with handling special counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation investigation.

They objected to Manafort being charged for alleged conduct that occurred before the 2016 campaign, and asserted that the authorization for Mueller's probe was so broad it was a "blank check" and violates Justice Department regulations they say call for a "specific factual statement" of matters under investigation. He was appointed to take over an existing investigation, and it appears from the chronology and the written record that the matters contained in the Superseding Indictment were already a part of the ongoing inquiry that was lawfully transferred to the Special Counsel by the Department of Justice in May of 2017.

Jackson said Manafort's indictment on charges of money laundering and failing to register as a foreign agent in connection with his work for Ukraine "falls squarely" within the authority to investigate Russian influence-the grant of authority that Manafort had not challenged.

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The ruling marks a setback for Manafort, who last month was buoyed when another US judge in Virginia who is hearing the tax charges against him questioned prosecutors about whether their case went beyond the mandate of Mueller's Russian Federation investigation. "But the indictment will not be dismissed, and the matter will proceed to trial", Berman Jackson wrote in her opinion Tuesday.

Whether Manafort colluded with Russian government officials as Russia was trying to meddle in the 2016 United States election.

After Jackson's ruling against Manafort, his spokesman Jason Maloni said Manafort "maintains his innocence and looks forward to prevailing in this matter". Separately, a judge in Virginia is weighing a similar request to dismiss a tax- and bank-fraud case against him there. That memo explicitly gave Mueller authority to probe all of Manafort's Ukraine-related work predating the 2016 campaign.

Ellis, a 1987 Reagan appointee, said the special counsel still may well have the authority to bring the charges, adding at one point, "I'm not saying it's illegitimate". The Virginia federal judge, TS Ellis, has not yet ruled on the question.

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