Judge: Mueller can prosecute Manafort

Breaking Federal judge just ruled on Paul Manafort’s motion to dismiss Mueller charges

Breaking Federal judge just ruled on Paul Manafort’s motion to dismiss Mueller charges

"Manafort's civil case will be dismissed", United States District Judge Amy Berman Jackson wrote in the order.

A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has the authority to prosecute Paul Manafort, the former chairman of President Trump's presidential campaign.

In her 37-page ruling, Jackson went through a point-by-point rejection of Manafort's other arguments, including his contention that Mueller had been given a "blank check" to investigate anything "he may stumble across".

The judge deemed that the indictment "falls squarely within that portion of the authority granted to the Special Counsel", according to The Atlantic staff writer Natasha Bertrand.

A federal judge ruled against the legal motion from Paul Manafort to dismiss charges filed as a result of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian election tampering.

Manafort is facing criminal charges of charges of money-laundering conspiracy, false statements and acting as an unregistered foreign agent.

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Jackson said Justice Department regulations allow for a "broad grant of authority".

Beyond investigating links between Russian Federation and Trump's campaign, Mueller is also charged with pursuing "any matter that arose or may arise directly" from his collusion probe.

Jackson sided with prosecutors who had produced an August 2017 memo from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Jackson said that even if the Manafort case didn't arise from links to Russian Federation, and instead was a matter that arose from that investigation, the indictment should stand. The memo shows Rosenstein authorised Mueller to investigate Manafort's Ukrainian work and related financial crimes.

Peter Carr, a spokesman for the special counsel's office, declined to comment.

This means that the criminal case against Manafort in Washington D.C. can move forward. The Virginia indictment accuses him of hiding tens of millions of dollars he earned advising pro-Russia politicians in Ukraine from 2006 through 2015. Ellis expressed his skepticism at a previous hearing that Mueller's current investigation into Russian coordination during the 2016 campaign would connect to Manafort's lobbying activities years before the Trump campaign existed. His lawyers filed for a dismissal on the basis that the charges extended beyond the scope of Mueller's appointment.

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