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Special counsel Robert Mueller's prosecutors requested Thursday that part of a conversation they had with Judge T.S. Ellis III and defense lawyers for Paul Manafort two days earlier be kept private, because it revealed "substantive evidence pertaining to an ongoing investigation".

One of the more interesting dynamics in the trial of Donald Trump's former campaign chairman has been the skirmishes between the judge and prosecutors. In the filing, they argued that Ellis should instruct the jury that he made an error in admonishing them during the testimony of IRS agent Michael Welch.

After Yanukovych lost power in 2014, "I would say it decreased the income stream", Gates, wearing a blue suit, told the court matter-of-factly.

"That's really beyond the pale for the judge", Litman said of the exchange, which took place during cross-examination, in front of the jury.

But prosecutor Greg Andres followed up by suggesting that Gates and Manafort were not fully truthful.

Manafort's political work included advising Viktor Yanukovich on policy after he won the Ukrainian presidency, Gates said.

Michael Zeldin, a former federal prosecutor, said that in Downing's remaining hour of cross-examination on Wednesday, he needs to keep painting Gates as an unreliable person who can not be trusted. Trump was indirectly referenced in multiple ways throughout the testimony, highlighting the risks to the president of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation. He also is accused of fraudulently obtaining millions more in bank loans, including while he was working on the Trump campaign.

In testimony Tuesday, Gates acknowledged embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from Manafort and carrying on an extramarital affair.

Mr Manafort and Mr Gates were the first people indicted in Mr Mueller's investigation into potential ties between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign. Downing asked Gates Tuesday, a rhetorical question everyone present at the trial with any courtroom experience saw coming a mile away.

Gates, who has pleaded guilty to a federal crime, testified that he organized fraudulent paperwork both with and without Manafort's knowledge.

Neither Manafort nor Gates was charged in connection with their Trump campaign work, but the special counsel continues to investigate Russian election interference and any ties to associates of the president. The judge said he thought he'd he'd made clear no witnesses were allowed to sit in on the rest of the trial, and after the prosecutors said they'd heard differently, Judge Ellis erupted.

At the time he worked for Trump, jurors heard, Manafort's business in Ukraine had always been dried up, and his firm didn't have any clients.

This was a way to decrease Manafort's taxable income, added Gates, who did not report the money to Manafort's book-keeper or accountants. "This is an especially severe risk when the core of the case is the testimony of a co-conspirator who is admittedly a thief, liar, and embezzler".

Ahead of that barrage, Gates implicated himself in a vast amount of criminal conduct on the stand, an apparent strategic decision by prosecutors as they hoped to take some of the steam out of the defense's questioning. Downing had said he wanted to ask the question because it spoke to whether Gates had lied to Mueller's office, and whether Gates' plea agreement would still be valid.

Mr Gates testified he and Mr Manafort knew they were committing crimes for years, saying they had stashed money in foreign bank accounts and falsified bank loan documents.

Before jurors are sent off to deliberate at the end of a case, the judge typically tells them not to read anything into either the judge's words or body language, attorney and law professor Seth Abramson said in an email. Gates also provided the first witness testimony that overlaps with Trump's presidential campaign.

When Laporta and a colleague provided an assessment of how much tax Manafort would owe, Gates responded that Manafort didn't have the money to pay it.


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