When former Trump marketing campaign chairman Paul Manafort is sentenced for tax and financial institution fraud, U.S. District Decide T.S. Ellis III will doubtless situation the identical lecture he provides to drug sellers and financial institution robbers.
“You write the pages to your individual life story,” Ellis routinely tells defendants earlier than saying sentence. He additionally tells those that seem earlier than him that “life is a collection of decisions and residing with the implications of these decisions.”
Manafort’s decisions depart the 69-year-old with the very actual chance that he’ll spend the remainder of his life in jail.
Below federal sentencing tips, Manafort might obtain a 20-year sentence Thursday, although most observers anticipate he’ll obtain lower than that.
Final 12 months, a jury in U.S. District Courtroom in Alexandria, Virginia, convicted Manafort on eight felonies associated to tax and financial institution fraud costs for hiding overseas revenue from his work in Ukraine from the IRS and later inflating his revenue on financial institution mortgage purposes. Prosecutors have mentioned the work in Ukraine was on behalf of politicians who have been intently aligned with Russia, although Manafort has insisted his work helped these politicians distance themselves from Russia and align with the West.
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After his conviction, Manafort pleaded responsible to separate costs within the District of Columbia associated to unlawful lobbying. He faces as much as 5 years in jail on every of two counts to which he pleaded responsible. Within the District case, prosecutors say Manafort has did not reside as much as the phrases of his plea discount by offering false data to investigators in interviews.
Within the Virginia case, neither prosecutors nor defence attorneys have advisable a particular time period to the decide of their sentencing memoranda. Manafort’s attorneys have sought a sentence considerably under the rules, primarily based on various components.
WATCH BELOW: Paul Manafort could spend the remainder of his life in jail
First, they are saying Manafort has suffered critical well being issues since he has been incarcerated, largely in solitary confinement, on the Alexandria jail the place he awaits sentence. They are saying he has developed gout and suffers debilitating foot ache in consequence, and that he’s experiencing emotions of claustrophobia and isolation.
Prosecutors say the claims of well being points haven’t withstood scrutiny and even when they did, poor well being will not be a motive to flee penalties of legal conduct.
Defence attorneys have additionally complained that Manafort was unfairly snared by particular counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether or not Russia meddled on Donald Trump’s behalf throughout the 2016 presidential marketing campaign. They argue that Mueller went past the scope of his mandate to research Manafort. Even Ellis, on the outset of the case, speculated that prosecutors’ true motive in prosecuting Manafort was to stress him to supply proof towards Trump.
Prosecutors have disputed that, and in courtroom filings have mentioned Manafort’s enterprise dealings have been underneath investigation even earlier than Mueller was appointed as particular counsel.
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Defence attorneys have additionally cited the truth that Manafort has forfeited tens of millions of in money and property on account of his convictions, and has additionally suffered public disgrace on account of his high-profile prosecution.
Authorities attorneys countered that Manafort’s tens of millions have been constructed on a legal enterprise during which he hid tens of tens of millions of in overseas revenue and did not pay greater than $6 million in taxes.
“Manafort has failed to simply accept that he’s accountable for the legal decisions that deliver him to this Courtroom for sentencing,” prosecutors Uzo Asonye, Andrew Weissmann, Greg Andres and Brandon Van Grack wrote in a sentencing memo Tuesday.