Paul Manafort won't learn his fate this week. The jury weighing charges against him has gone home for the day and won't return until Monday. US District Judge TS Ellis III allowed the panel to leave at 5pm because one of the jurors had a scheduled "event" to attend, reports USA Today. Earlier, the judge refused journalists' request to release the names of jurors, with Ellis saying he had received threats and feared they would, too. Also on Friday, President Trump weighed in on his former campaign manager. "I think the whole Manafort trial is very sad," Trump told reporters at the White House, per the AP.
"When you look at what's going on, I think it's a very sad day for our country," he said. "He worked for me for a very short period of time. But you know what, he happens to be a very good person and I think it's very sad what they've done to Paul Manafort." The case calls on jurors to follow the complexities of foreign bank accounts and shell companies, loan regulations, and tax rules. It exposed details about the lavish lifestyle of the onetime political insider, including a $15,000 jacket made of ostrich leather and $900,000 spent at a boutique retailer in New York via international wire transfer. The jury ended its first day of deliberations Thursday with a series of questions to the judge, including a request to "redefine" reasonable doubt.
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