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U.S. judge keeps bail conditions for ex-Trump campaign aide Manafort

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U.S. judge keeps bail conditions for ex-Trump campaign aide Manafort

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By Sarah N. Lynch WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. District judge again declined to ease bail conditions for President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort and his business associate Richard Gates on Monday, saying they still needed to provide more financial information. Judge Amy Berman Jackson said she was concerned about some of the $12 million (9.14 million pounds) in assets that Manafort has offered to pledge in exchange for lifting his house arrest restrictions, especially several life insurance policies that are held in trust and in his wife’s name. Having a family member who is serving as a surety, or a guarantor of the policy, she said, “is very problematic.” Manafort and Gates have pleaded not guilty to a 12-count indictment as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and potential collusion with some of Trump’s campaign associates. The indictment includes charges of conspiring to launder money, conspiracy against the United States and failing to register as foreign agents of Ukraine’s former pro-Russian government. The Kremlin has repeatedly denied meddling. Trump has denied collusion between his associates and Russia, calling the investigations a witch hunt. The judge last week denied requests from Manafort and Gates for an easing of their bail conditions. On Monday, she said she is not very likely to grant Manafort or Gates the freedom to travel internationally and is inclined to require them to stay in the Washington area for work, unless such trips are cleared in advance.

(Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Editing by Alistair Bell)
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