Prosecutors: Manafort says he's treated like 'VIP' in jail

Paul Manafort says he's being treated 'like a VIP' in jail

Manafort, who was President Trump's campaign chairman for several months, last week asked for his July 25 trial in Alexandria federal court to be delayed until this fall, saying his incarceration in Virginia's Northern Neck has made it too hard to prepare.

"Apparently, but unsurprisingly, the Special Counsel has taken the time to assign personnel to listen to all of the non-privileged phone calls Mr. Manafort makes from jail", they said.

He's even got his own "private, self-contained living unit, which is larger than other inmates' units", the filing says.

Prosecutors also cited taped phone calls from prison in which Manafort remarked that he was being treated like a "VIP" and had access to "all my files like I would at home".

Mr. Manafort is facing trials in Washington and Virginia on tax evasion, bank fraud, lying to investigators and other charges.

Manafort has been jailed since last month after a judge revoked his house arrest. The judge added that Manafort's "access to counsel and his ability to prepare for trial trumps his personal comfort". The unit also has a personal laptop which can be used in both his unit and his separate workroom.

Prosecutors say the bulk of the documents handed over recently come from Manafort's own bookkeeping service, and so are not unfamiliar to him.

But visitor logs and recordings of phone calls show that isn't the case, prosecutors said in a court filing Wednesday opposing Manafort's request for a delay. Manafort's not required to wear a prison uniform and isn't confined to a cell from 8:30 a.m.to 10 p.m., Mueller said.

In response, U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III ordered Manafort moved from his current jail to one in Alexandria, Virginia, where the federal courthouse is located, so that he can be closer to his lawyers.

"Review of that material can be accomplished well in advance of the July 25 trial date and does not warrant a months-long adjournment", the government filings said. His trial in Washington is scheduled to begin in September. According to the filing, Manafort reads and writes emails on a second laptop that his team brings in and out of the prison. Ellis said he made that decision in response to Manafort's complaints about the difficulty in getting ready for the trial.

Manafort responded by asking that he be allowed to stay in Warsaw, citing concerns about safety and "the challenges he will face in adjusting to a new place of confinement" two weeks before trial.

Manafort has also argued that his trial should be moved from Alexandria to Roanoke, where jurors are more likely to support the president, his attorneys told the court.

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