Judge orders Paul Manafort moved to suburban Washington jail

  • Judge orders Paul Manafort moved to suburban Washington jail

Judge orders Paul Manafort moved to suburban Washington jail

In earlier court filings, Mr. Manafort's attorney said the distance of Northern Neck jail - two hours from Washington, D.C. - has made it hard to adequately prepare for trial.

The 69-year-old political operative, who is detained while awaiting trial on charges of financial crimes, made the comments in monitored prison telephone calls, according to a court filing by the office of Robert Mueller, the special counsel.

Citing prison visitor logs, Mueller's office says Manafort is getting plenty of time to meet with his lawyers, and is benefiting from the "VIP" treatment at Northern Neck Jail in Virginia.

The filing also asserts that Manafort has a personal telephone, laptop with extension court for private use in his own unit and access to all necessary documents.

Besides those perks, Manafort also has his own bathroom and shower, and he doesn't have to wear a prison uniform.

In the meantime, he said Manafort would be moved from the Northern Neck to the jail in Alexandria, in suburban Washington, "to ensure that the defendant has access to his counsel and can adequately prepare his defense".

This isn't the first time Manafort has received special privileges while under law enforcement supervision.

"Manafort can hardly now complain about the order of the trials", the special counsel attorneys said.

And in December 2017, Judge Amy Berman Jackson allowed him to temporarily leave house arrest to spend Christmas with his extended family in the Hamptons. He has scheduled a hearing on both issues for Tuesday at 1 p.m. While Manafort's lawyers days ago said that he was in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day because the jail couldn't guarantee his safety, the government's portrayal suggested his circumstances are much less grim, a fact that Manafort himself tacitly admitted, when he said in a monitored conversation that he was being treated like a "VIP". "When the team takes the laptop from the jail, it reconnects to the internet and Manafort's emails are transmitted".

The filing said that Manafort had made more than 300 phone calls in the last three weeks and even "developed a workaround" to outsmart a ban on inmates sending or receiving emails at Northern Neck regional jail in Warsaw, Virginia.

Manafort has also argued that his trial should be moved from Alexandria to Roanoke, where jurors are more likely to support the president, his attorneys told the court.