Pull up your chairs and gather around. On the fourth day of the Manafort trial, a birthday cake was in Judge Ellis’ court room!
It’s true! “The jury was granted permission by Judge T.S. Ellis III to bring a birthday cake to the courthouse, presumably to celebrate the birthday of one of the jurors,” reports NPR.
After cake, Judge Ellis put an end to the circus surrounding “what’s-in-Manafort’s-closet” that prosecutors spent days on and instead they transitioned into finances.
The jury listened to the testimony of four witnesses, specifically Paul Manafort’s bookkeeper, accountants and two vendors.
A picture was cast that Paul Manafort hid information, such as foreign accounts from his tax preparers.
Prosecutors also painted Manafort as a man with a huge world-wide web of transactions meant to intentionally defraud the government of millions of dollars. Continued Below
Manafort’s Bookkeeper Outlined That Ukraine Money Stopped In 2015
The prosecution painstakingly went through Manafort’s tax returns for the years 2010 through 2014. Heather Washkuhn, his bookkeeper, bravely got on the stand and testified.
“Washkuhn also detailed how after Manafort’s political consulting money from Ukraine stopped coming in, around 2015, he and his company began piling up debt and financial woes,” NPR reports.
This is the second time it’s been punctuated in this trial that it has ZERO to do with Russian collusion during the campaign of 2016. Continued Below
Manafort’s accountant says he wasn’t aware of the elaborate foreign entities.
Additionally, Politico reports, “An accountant who helped prepare Manafort’s taxes for almost 20 years, Philip Ayliff, testified Friday that he and his colleagues often directly asked Manafort and his top aide, Rick Gates, about possible foreign accounts and other unusual transactions but were never informed about a web of foreign entities prosecutors say Manafort controlled.”
On the fourth day of Manafort’s trial, presiding Judge Ellis dropped a BOMB on Mueller’s team when he declared that, “he doesn’t think it will need to go longer than three weeks and would like it to wrap up in two,” per CBS News.
What you need to know about the Manafort Case: