Judge Issues Sweeping Gag Order in Paul Manafort, Rick Gates Money Laundering and Conspiracy Case

A federal judge issued a sweeping gag order in the money laundering and conspiracy case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and campaign aide Rick Gates that prohibits all parties – including potential witnesses – from making public statements about the case.

U.S. District Judge Amy Jackson issued the order on Wednesday “to safeguard defendants’ rights to a fair trial, and to ensure that the court has the ability to seat a jury that has not been tainted by pretrial publicity.”

The order applies to “all interested parties in the matter,” including the defendants, their lawyers, prosecutors, witnesses and potential witnesses, Jackson said in a two page order.

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.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Kevin Johnson