Weirdest Exchange Yet at the Manafort Trial

Weirdest Exchange Yet at the Manafort Trial

(Newser) – The high-stakes Paul Manafort trial is underway, and Bloomberg takes note of a particularly odd exchange Monday between US District Judge TS Ellis III and prosecutor Greg Andres. It came during a break in the testimony of former Manafort partner Rick Gates as the judge and prosecutors clashed, out of the jury’s earshot, about which questions were fair game. “I understand how frustrated you are,” said Ellis at one point. “In fact, there’s tears in your eyes right now.” When Andres denied that, the judge responded, “Well, they’re watery.”

At another point, the judge admonished Andres to look at him when speaking, instead of looking down. “I don’t want to get in trouble for some facial expression,” Andres replied. “I don’t want to get yelled at again by the court for having some facial expression when I’m not doing anything wrong, but trying my case.” As the Hill notes, Ellis has warned both sides not to make facial expressions in court that could sway the jury.

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