Judge Hearing Arguments for Manafort, Gates to Be Removed From Home Detention

Saul Bowman
November 7, 2017

A federal judge said Monday that she was inclined to remove from house arrest two former aides to President Donald Trump's campaign now facing criminal charges but would not do so until receiving more detailed financial information from them.

Both must remain in their homes in Virginia with electronic Global Positioning System monitoring them until they work out a deal to disclose their assets and secure a bond, Jackson said during hearing in U.S. District Court in Washington.

During an interview on CNN on Sunday, Bharara said he had no idea what evidence special counsel Robert Mueller had to back up charges of money laundering, tax evasion and conspiracy, but if convicted, Manafort would spend serious time behind bars. Both Manafort, who faces up as many as 15 1/2 years in prison, and Gates, who faces 12 1/2 years, pleaded not guilty on October 30.

That means the men remain at least for now on home confinement, a condition imposed last week following their indictment.

A federal magistrate last week ordered Manafort and Gates to be placed on home confinement.

Prosecutors cited the phone and multiple passports in saying that Manafort posed a risk of fleeing the US after his October 27 indictment on charges that he and his right-hand man, Rick Gates, concealed their work as agents of Ukraine, laundered millions of dollars and hid offshore accounts. The two have pleaded not guilty.

The judge also has considered issuing a gag order in the case, but that topic was not addressed at Monday's hearing.

In court papers, Manafort has pledged $12.5 million in assets to guarantee that he'll show up for future court appearances. He promised to limit his travel to Washington, D.C., Florida, New York and Virginia and to not apply for any travel documents. "We're talking about [the risk of] flight". The prosecutors noted he held three passports and traveled overseas with a phone and email registered under an alias.

They still contend he's a flight risk, and say his total net worth - which Manafort claims is $28 million - is unclear until he gives them more details. They said that of the three passports, he used one to submit with visa applications to certain foreign countries, and the third he applied for and obtained after he had lost his primary one.

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