Paul Manafort, the former campaign chairman for President Donald Trump, was transferred to a detention center in Alexandria, Virginia on Thursday-which resulted in his mugshot being released. They said they gained access to another prison call on June 20 in which Manafort told a listener skeptical about delaying the Virginia case and bringing forward a separate trial in Washington, D.C.
In earlier court filings, Mr. Manafort's attorney said the distance of Northern Neck jail - two hours from Washington, D.C. - has made it hard to adequately prepare for trial.
The jail houses about 400 inmates, and at least 140 beds are reserved for federal prisoners like Manafort.More news: Meet the heroic Navy SEALs from the Thailand cave rescue
Manafort has not been seen since a DC federal judge revoked his bail and sent him to the regional jail in Warsaw, Virginia, about two hours from DC, for alleged witness tampering.
Judge T.S. Ellis, the federal judge overseeing Manafort's case in Alexandria, Va., ordered Tuesday that U.S. Marshals transfer Manafort to a detention facility in Alexandria - much closer to the Washington metro area, where the former Trump campaign chairman faces two trials. In other words, he had decided he wanted to stay in Northern Neck, where, the special counsel pointed out, Manafort had said he was being treated like a "VIP." Ellis appeared to be frustrated by Manafort's attorneys when they expressed concerns with their client's safety after the judge chose to ease travel burdens they complained about.
Far from being restrictive, prosecutors said Manafort had been given a personal telephone in his cell, which he used for more than 300 calls with attorneys and others over the past three weeks, and found a workaround to the jail's ban on email.More news: After North Korea talks disappoint, Trump points finger at Beijing
But Manafort's attorneys complained about the distance they had to regularly travel to meet with him in an effort to delay his trial.
In their court filing Wednesday, prosecutors sought to pick apart Manafort's arguments that he needs to delay the trial because of his jail conditions.
They said Mueller's team 'does not pause to consider the reasons a detained defendant might have to make his situation sound better when speaking with concerned friends and family'. His trial in Washington is scheduled to begin in September.More news: Kylie Jenner Reveals She ‘Got Rid’ of Her Lip Fillers
Judge Ellis set a July 17 hearing to discuss Manafort's request to continue the Virginia trial and change venues to Richmond, Virginia.