Paul Manafort co-defendant Richard Gates shows up in court with new lawyer
Thomas Green, a high-powered defense lawyer at Sidley Austin in Washington, D.C., appeared for the first time in court on Wednesday alongside President Donald Trump’s former deputy campaign chairman Richard Gates.
Green’s appearance at the federal courthouse comes at the same time that the other lawyers on Gates’ legal team are asking permission to stop representing him, citing “irreconcilable differences.”
CNN had previously reported that Green was now representing Gates, though to date he has still not entered a formal appearance as counsel on the public court docket.
Gates and Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort were both indicted in late October by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, as part of his ongoing investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia.
Manafort and Gates face charges including conspiracy to launder money, conspiracy to defraud the United States, and failure to register as foreign agents in connection with their political work for a pro-Russia Ukrainian party.
They have pleaded not guilty, and Trump has denied that his campaign colluded with Russia.
Gates and Manafort returned to court for a status hearing on the case on Wednesday, though large portions of the proceeding remained under seal.
One sealed hearing dealt with the request by Gates’ other lawyers – Shanlon Wu and Walter Mack – to drop out of representing Gates.
After the closed hearing ended, Wu said there was no change yet in the status of Gates’ legal representation.
A second part of the closed proceedings on Wednesday, meanwhile, pertained to disagreements over bail conditions for Manafort.
Manafort still remains under house arrest at his home in Florida, even though the judge previously approved bail conditions that would permit him to have his home confinement lifted.
At a hearing last month, his lawyer Kevin Downing accused the judge of inadvertently setting his bond at $17 million, instead of $10 million – an allegation she denied.
Since then, Manafort’s attorneys have filed motions under seal to have the bond package adjusted.
The special counsel’s office is expected to file a redacted public version of its response to Manafort’s modified bail request by Friday.
The judge also on Wednesday deferred on setting a trial date for now.
(Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Editing by Susan Thomas)