Earlier today Paul Manafort entered a Virginia federal courtroom in a wheelchair, holding a cane and wearing a green jumpsuit as Federal Judge T.S. Ellis handed down a sentence to the former Trump Campaign Chairman. The Judge sentenced Manafort to a total of 47 months in prison.
Prosecutors working for Robert Mueller had recommended that Manafort receive a sentence of between 19-and-a-half to 24 years in prison for the 8 felony convictions that he received back in August of last year.
“The defendant blames everyone from the special counsel’s office to his Ukrainian clients for his own criminal choices,” prosecutors wrote in a final court filing earlier this week to the Judge.
During today’s hearing, Mueller prosecutor Greg Andres told the judge “Manafort did not provide valuable information to the special counsel that wasn’t already known.”
Manafort spoke briefly at his sentencing hearing, not apologizing for the crimes, but asking for leniency and compassion.
“I appreciate the fairness. You bent over backwards. Thank you for a fair trial,” Manafort told the judge.
Although none of the convictions which Manafort was sentenced on today involved the former campaign chairman’s work for the Trump campaign or the president himself, the conviction was the first real test of Mueller’s probe, and are the results of the very first indictment that Mueller handed down in late 2017.
Turning 70-years-old in less than a month, today’s sentence could very well amount to a life sentence for Mr. Manafort in and of itself.
This is not Manafort’s final court appearance. In just under a week, on March 13th, he faces a second sentencing hearing in federal court in Washington, D.C. on felony counts that he pleaded guilty to last year.