US President Donald Trump’s former campaign chief Paul Manafort faces potentially spending the rest of his life behind bars when a judge sentences him on Thursday for tax crimes and bank fraud.
Manafort, who turns 70 in April, was convicted by a Virginia jury in August of five counts of filing false income tax returns, two counts of bank fraud and one count of failing to report a foreign bank account.
Manafort is one of a half dozen former Trump associates and senior aides charged by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who has been investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign.
The sentencing guidelines for Manafort’s crimes call for between 19 and 24 years in prison but his defense attorneys have urged Judge T.S. Ellis to impose a “substantially” lower jail term.
In a filing with the judge, they said Manafort is “truly remorseful” and is in poor health after spending the past nine months in prison.
They pointed out that Manafort, who suffers from gout, is a first-time offender and said the sentencing guidelines are “clearly disproportionate” for the crimes he committed.
Source: Guardian Newspaper