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Judge Slaps Gag Order On Everyone Involved In Manafort-Gates Case

Judge Slaps Gag Order On Everyone Involved In Manafort-Gates Case”

The federal judge overseeing the case against former Donald Trump campaign aides Paul Manafort and Rick Gates has issued a gag order in the case.

U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson ordered legal counsel and potential witnesses to avoid public statements or comments to the media that could pose "material prejudice" in the high-profile case. She spoke after lawyer Kevin Downing told the media on the courthouse steps that the charges against Manafort were "ridiculous".

Manafort and Gates were charged last week with conspiracy, money laundering and acting as unregistered foreign agents in one of the first criminal cases filed by special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign.

Jackson indicated in a hearing last week that she may issue such an order should no party file a motion before November 7 objecting to it, and none did. The two have pleaded not guilty and remain under house arrest.

The rules are targeted at comments likely to affect the outcome of a trial or the impartiality of jurors.

Jackson said she was inclined to end home confinement but not to permit the men to travel internationally, but would await ruling on that until further details take part between the parties. A status conference is set in the case for December 11, and the trial is expected sometime next spring.



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