Jonathan Ernst | Reuters
President Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort departs U.S. District Court after a motions hearing in Alexandria, Virginia, May 4, 2018.
A federal judge on Friday denied former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s bid to dismiss a money laundering charge brought against him by special counsel Robert Mueller in a pending criminal case in Washington, D.C.
U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson also denied Manafort’s request to dismiss a related allegation that would require him to forfeit properties if he was convicted on that money laundering charge.
In a court filing, Jackson disputed the argument put forward by Manafort’s lawyers that Manafort did not violate a law requiring people who act as foreign agents to register as such.
The lawyers said the law does not ban the act of serving as a foreign agent, but merely bans the failure to register as a foreign agent.
Jackson said that argument was “inconsistent with the text of the statute.”
This is more bad news for Manafort, who has been on the wrong end of multiple court decisions since being sent to jail last week over charges he tampered with potential trial witnesses.
The court on Thursday denied Manafort’s request to keep prosecutors from using evidence seized in May from his Virginia storage unit. Manafort had argued the search was illegal, but the court rejected that reasoning on the grounds that agents were given consent for the search by Manafort’s assistant, whose name was on the lease.
Manafort’s lawyers did not immediately respond to CNBC’s requests for comment.
Manafort has been indicted on a number of charges related to his overseas consulting business and his personal financial dealings. Following an initial indictment last fall, grand juries in Virginia and Washington, D.C., handed up two more, in February and June of this year. Manafort is now awaiting trial dates in both locations.
Manafort’s business partner, Richard Gates, who faced many of the same charges Manafort is fighting, pleaded guilty in February to conspiracy against the U.S. and making false statements, and has since been cooperating with the investigation. Gates could face more than four years in prison, based on federal sentencing guidelines.