Judge rejects Manafort's attempt to dismiss Mueller indictment

Mueller's office files unredacted memo outlining scope of Russia probe-filing

Giuliani is said to have left the firm due to the all-consuming nature of his duties on Trump's legal team, which is fronting Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe into possible collusion with Russian Federation.

A spokesman for Manafort did not have any immediate comment on the ruling, and a spokesman for the special counsel declined to comment.

A federal judge in Washington DC is proceeding with the criminal case brought forward by special counsel Robert Mueller, regarding Paul Manafort, Trump's former campaign chairman.

Jackson said Manafort's indictment on charges of money laundering and failing to register as a foreign agent in connection with his work for Ukraine "falls squarely" within the authority to investigate Russian influence-the grant of authority that Manafort had not challenged.

Manafort is charged with tax and bank fraud connected to his lobbying work for the Ukrainian government and pro-Russia interests in Ukraine.

"Even if a judge were to conclude that the regulations could give rise to rights that can be enforced in a courtroom", Judge Jackson wrote in her memorandum, "the Acting Attorney General did not violate those regulations when he exercised his statutory authority to authorize the Special Counsel to investigate not only 'links and/or coordination, ' but also, 'any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation'". And Donald Trump cited them in a speech to the National Rifle Association to claim that Mueller's indictment is a "phony Russian Federation witch hunt". In her 37-page ruling, Jackson went through a point-by-point rejection of Manafort's arguments, including his contention that Mueller had been given a "blank check" to investigate anything "he may stumble across".

Earlier this month, Judge T.S. Ellis, a federal judge in Virginia, questioned the scope of Mueller's investigation, at times warning against "unfettered power" and calling attention to the fact that charges against Manafort predate his time on the Trump campaign.

USA district judge Amy Jackson declined to throw out the case against Manafort, who faces two indictments from the special counsel.

Manafort has filed a similar motion to dismiss his charges in Virginia.

Ellis, who was appointed to the bench by Republican President Ronald Reagan, has also said he too wants to see an unredacted copy before he can fully form a decision on whether to dismiss the charges.

"It bears emphasizing at this stage that Manafort is presumed to be innocent of these charges, and it will be the prosecution's burden to prove him guilty beyond a reasonable doubt".

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