Be careful what you ask for. Paul Manafort’s lawyers asked the court to postpone his July 25 trial, claiming that Manafort’s incarceration in a rural Warsaw, VA detention facility 100 miles from Washington D.C., put an unfair burden upon their client’s ability to prepare for trial. So the judge said, fine, we’ll move him to another facility. Then the lawyers balked and asked that their client not be moved. This is why.
“Among the unique privileges Manafort enjoys at the jail are a private, self-contained living unit, which is larger than other inmates’ units, his own bathroom and shower facility, his own personal telephone, and his own workspace to prepare for trial,” a footnote in the filing reads. “Manafort is also not required to wear a prison uniform. On the monitored prison phone calls, Manafort has mentioned that he is being treated like a ‘VIP.'”
So the attorneys realized what they had done when the judge called their bluff and said, no, leave Manafort where he is for his safety. Here’s what the judge said to that:
“It is surprising and confusing when the counsel identifies a problem and then opposes the most logical solution to that problem,” Ellis wrote Wednesday, adding, “Defense counsel has not identified any general or specific threat to defendant’s safety at the Alexandria Detention Center.”
So so much for the cushy digs in the country facility in which to prepare for trial. Manafort will be moved and who knows how nice the new place will be. And he will be in court on July 25.