Judge: Mueller Charged Manafort to Get Dirt on Trump

A federal judge in Virginia questioned on Friday whether special counsel Robert Mueller has the authority to bring tax and bank fraud charges ex-Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort, according to The Washington Post. “You don’t really care about Mr. Manafort’s bank fraud,” Judge T.S. Ellis III said during a Friday morning hearing. “You really care about getting information Mr. Manafort can give you that would reflect on Mr. Trump and lead to his prosecution or impeachment.” Manafort’s indictment in Virginia alleges that he “hid tens of millions of dollars he earned advising pro-Russia politicians in Ukraine” from the IRS years before he got involved in the Trump campaign, according to the Associated Press. He was seeking to have those charges dismissed. Ellis made no decision on the motion. This comes after U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson dismissed Manafort’s civil case disputing the scope of Mueller’s investigation.