Attorneys for former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort rested their case on Tuesday, declining to present evidence to rebut the government's allegations that the political consultant concealed overseas earnings from the USA government to avoid paying taxes and borrowed money using bogus financial documents.
Manafort, 69, is facing tax evasion and bank fraud charges after being accused of hiding income earned from his Ukrainian work from the IRS.
Though both sides have rested their cases, it will still be hours before the jury will start deliberating in Paul Manafort's tax- and bank-fraud trial. Then, after his money in Ukraine dried up, he defrauded banks by lying about his income on loan applications and concealing other financial information, such as mortgages, it's alleged. When it resumed, he asked whether they had a defense to present.
Paul Manafort, President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, leaves the Federal District Court after a hearing, in Washington, DC, May 23, 2018.
Andrew McCarthy predicted the defense's closing argument in Paul Manafort's trial will hone in on one person: Rick Gates.
Prosecutors rested their case on Monday, closing two weeks of a testimony in which they introduced a trove of documentary evidence as they sought to prove Manafort's guilt on 18 separate criminal counts.
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The jury heard from a former partner and a former accountant on how the long-time political consultant doctored his accounts and laundered tens of millions of dollars through offshore banks.
James Brennan, a vice president at Calk's Chicago bank, Federal Savings, testified in court the bank was aware Manafort had lied about his finances to obtain the loans but proceeded anyway because of Calk.
The defense has tried to blame Manafort's financial mistakes on his former assistant, Richard Gates. Witnesses testified that Calk pushed the loans through because he wanted a post in the Trump administration.
Manafort joined the Trump campaign in March 2016 and was elevated to campaign chair in May.
Manafort's lawyers decided not to call any witnesses, and Manafort himself will not testify in his own defense.
Calk and Manafort were in communication about a possible position on the Trump campaign, which Calk eventually got in the form of an economic advisory council spot. Judge T.S. Ellis (rear C) looks on.