Paul Manafort will be sentenced for financial crimes on Thursday, even as key details about his place in the special counsel's investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 US election will remain a mystery.
Federal sentencing guidelines called for a term of roughly 20 years, though few observers expected Manafort to receive a sentence that long.
Manafort, who has been dealing with health issues, looked unwell as he entered the courtroom in a wheelchair.
The judge has used hearings in Manafort's case previously to inject politics into the proceedings. He'll be sentenced there on March 13. Among the things that will be decided is whether the D.C. and Virginia sentences will run consecutively or concurrently.
Prosecutors also believe Manafort still poses a risk of recidivism, noting that he lied to the government and the grand jury as recently as past year.
Manafort is one of a half dozen former Trump associates and senior aides charged by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who has been investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign.
Government lawyers countered that Manafort's millions were built on a criminal enterprise in which he hid tens of millions of dollars in foreign income and failed to pay more than $6 million in taxes. What the trial Virginia laid bare was that as he was ascending to the top of the campaign, he was also facing deep financial troubles and had turned to illegal schemes to alleviate them.
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The charges against Manafort were not connected to his role in the Trump campaign, which he headed for two months in 2016, but were related to lucrative consulting work he did for Ukrainian politicians from 2004 to 2014. He was found by the judge in the District case to have breached his plea agreement by lying to the government. After pro-Kremlin Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych's ouster, prosecutors said, Manafort lied to banks to secure loans and maintain an opulent lifestyle with luxurious homes, designer suits and even a $15,000 ostrich-skin jacket.
In the case in Virginia, Judge Ellis showed some antagonism towards Mueller's prosecutors. The prosecutors complained, particularly during the trial, that Ellis was pushing things too far with the skeptical questioning and derisive remarks made in front of the jury.
The judge, however, declared a mistrial on 10 other fraud-related charges. A juror later told the media that there was single holdout member of the jury that prevented them from convicting him on all 18 counts, resulting in the partial mistrial.
Ellis apologized later in the trial after erroneously accusing prosecutors of letting a tax expert witness be present to hear testimony from other witnesses without the court's permission. However, Gates is also believe to be cooperating with other aspects of Mueller's probe.
Manafort, in addition to Trump's campaign, worked on the White House bids of Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George HW Bush and Bob Dole.
The verdict marked a dramatic fall for Manafort, a savvy political operative who advised US presidents as well as foreign leaders. The judge himself even noted that when Manafort addressed the court Thursday, he didn't express any regret for his crimes.