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Manafort jury says it cannot reach a consensus on at least one count



The jury of the trial against the former president of President Trump's campaign president, Paul Manafort, indicated that it is divided at least into one count and asked the judge for instructions on how to proceed.

Around 11 am on the fourth day of the committee's deliberations, a note with a question came from the jury's foreman. "Your honor, if we can not reach a consensus on a single count, as we should fill out the jury verdict form for that count," said the note, according to US District Court Judge T.S. Ellis III, "and what does this mean for the final verdict?"

The jurors also requested another verdict.

Manafort, who worked on Republican presidential campaigns dating back to Gerald R. Ford, faces 1

8 bank frauds and tax burdens. The case marks the first trial to leave the office of special adviser Robert S. Mueller III, and is an important public test of Mueller's work as he continues to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and if anyone of Trump's members conspired with those efforts.

Before summoning the jury to court to answer his question, Ellis said the note was "not an exceptional or unusual event in a jury trial" and gave attorneys in the case on the formulation of his response. [19659006] Ellis said he might be willing to accept a partial verdict at a later date, but not yet.

The Manafort lawyer, Kevin Downing, argued that jurors should receive a new verdict that could give them the opportunity to be undecided about the allegations. The "third option should be hanging at each count," said Downing, who added that the jury "should not be fooled" into thinking that a hanging jury is inappropriate.

Prosecutor Greg Andres opposed this suggestion, saying a form goes against the judge's instructions for the jury to continue deliberating. The judge has consented, saying that if the jurors are still unable to reach a consensus after sending them back to continue to deliberate, then "he will ask them to tell me where they are".

When the jurors were taken to court, Ellis told them that if they did not accept a verdict, the case would be "left open and undecided" and that there was no reason why 12 more jurors could decide the case "better or more exhaustively" than they could have done. He told jurors not to give up their beliefs, but asked them to assess whether they were in the minority and, if so, whether they should change their mind.

Juries are allowed to pronounce partial verdicts, in which they reach a unanimous decision of conviction or acquittal on some – but not all – of the counts against a defendant. In such circumstances, the acquittal or conviction will become the outcome of the trial for those specific allegations, but prosecutors will then have to decide whether to retaliate the counts that have led to a deadlock. During the deliberations, the judges encourage juries that claim to be blocked on one side or all of a case to continue trying to reach a unanimous verdict.

The Manafort trial in Alexandria, Virginia, began three weeks ago and the jury began to deliberate on Thursday. At the time of the note on Tuesday, the jurors had deliberated for around 25 hours in total.

After the commission returned home on Monday, Downing said outside the court that his client was happy to see the jury continuing to deliberate. "He thinks it was a good day," said Downing

Magistrates accuse that from 2010 to 2014, Manafort hid more than $ 15 million from the IRS – money he made as a political consultant in Ukraine.

income closed in 2014, authorities accuse Manafort of lying to banks to get millions of dollars in loans to support his extravagant lifestyle.

On Thursday, the jury asked Ellis to clarify some legal elements in the case that had been raised by the defense team. Since then, its members have deliberated without asking for further indications.

Manafort, 69, could spend the rest of his life in prison if convicted of the most serious charges in the case. His trial is the first to emerge from the office of special adviser Robert S. Mueller III.

The president has repeatedly spoken publicly in support of Manafort, both at the beginning of the trial and during the deliberations of the jury.

On Monday morning Trump tweeted that Mueller's investigators "are having fun ruining people's lives and REFUSE to look at the real corruption of Democrats – lies, layoffs, deleted emails and much more! Mueller's Angry Dems are trying to influence the elections, they are a national disgrace! "

Michael Brice-Saddler contributed to this report.


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