Donald Trump’s campaign chairman was already in just about the worst kind of position a defendant can be in at the start of a trial. The charges against him are a nearly endless list. The evidence against him is the size of a mountain. He’s already in jail for witness tampering. His longtime sidekick has cut a plea deal against him. The judge has ruled against every one of his motions. Oh, and prosecutors are uniquely focused on forcing him to flip. So could things get any worse for him? As it turns out, yes.
Months ago, it was revealed that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had managed to convince a judge to compel Paul Manafort’s former attorney to testify against him before the grand jury. Due to the sanctity of attorney-client privilege, it’s extraordinarily rare for a judge to allow this. However, there are specific exceptions under the law, such as when an attorney and client conspire together to do something illegal.
Now Mueller’s latest court filings reveal that Mueller never did haul Manafort’s attorney before the grand jury, for reasons that are unknown. Mueller managed to get the grand jury indictments he wanted against Manafort, even without the attorney’s testimony. But these same court filings reveal that Manafort’s attorney is in fact lined up to testify at Paul Manafort’s Washington DC trial. Just what Manafort needs.
By the way, we say “Paul Manafort’s Washington DC trial” because he’s actually going to be put on criminal trial in two different federal court districts, Washington DC and Northern Virginia. This guy committed so many different kinds of alleged crimes, there ended up being two distinct federal criminal cases built against him. Yeah, he’s that screwed. And did we mention that he’s already in jail?
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report