Mueller Submits List of 35 Potential Witnesses for Manafort’s Trial

Special Counsel Robert Mueller this Friday submitted a list of 35 potential witnesses for the trial of Paul Manafort, the former campaign chief of President Donald Trump.

The list includes bankers and accountants that will testify regarding charges of bank and tax fraud in the trial that is due to begin next week in Virginia.

According to Reuters, the list, disclosed in a court filing, included Manafort’s longtime business associate Richard Gates, who was indicted in October at the same time as Manafort, pleaded guilty in February and has been cooperating in Mueller’s probe.

Additionally, on the list is Manafort’s consultant who worked with him in Ukraine and served as chief strategist for 2016 Democratic presidential contender Bernie Sanders. Tad Devine’s firm issued a statement saying he was serving as a fact witness and had been assured he did not have legal exposure.

Manafort has pleaded not guilty to all 18 counts of bank and tax fraud, as well as failure to file reports of foreign bank accounts.

Among the witnesses there are also executives at banks that lent Manafort money, the accounting firm that did his taxes and others involved in financial dealings who could be asked to corroborate documentary evidence showing the alleged bank and tax fraud at the heart of the case, Reuters informed.

“The case will be proven by paper and those people who have a transactional relationship to the paper,” said Michael Zeldin, a former federal prosecutor. “All those people to say essentially that Manafort knew what he was doing.”

Although the trial was scheduled to start this past Wednesday in the Washington suburb of Alexandria, U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III delayed it until next Tuesday and directed Mueller to provide a witness list to Manafort’s lawyers.

Reuters reported that Renato Mariotti, a former federal prosecutor who is now a defense lawyer, has said that prosecutors probably want to show Manafort’s “luxurious lifestyle,” with the aim of making him less likable to jurors.


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