Prosecutors with the team of special counsel Robert Mueller on Monday rested the government’s case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, wrapping up more than two weeks of testimony alleging he hid millions of dollars offshore and failed to pay taxes on that money.
Manafort is facing a potential life sentence if he is convicted on 18 counts of financial charges, including money laundering and tax fraud. Manafort has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
The case against Manafort has barely referenced his work as President Trump’s campaign chairman and has not indicated if he may fit into the larger picture of Russian meddling in the 2016 campaign that Mueller's team is investigating.
Instead, Mueller’s prosecutors have called accountants, bookkeepers, luxury vendors and Manafort’s longtime business associate, with a final group of witnesses appearing on Friday to lay out his alleged financial transgressions.
The special counsel was planning on resting the case last week, but after a long delay on Friday the court closed shop with one witness left for Monday. The cause of the delay is not known.
One of Mueller's last witnesses on Monday was a mortgage banker with The Federal Savings Bank, which loaned money to Manafort in 2016. According to Mueller’s team, the bank’s founder and CEO Stephen Calk was given an unpaid advisory role in the Trump campaign after dining with Manafort. Prosecutors said Calk unsuccessfully sought a larger role in the Trump administration. The bank wrote in a statement to ABC News in April that the allegations are "simply not true."
An array of witnesses over the past two weeks backed the special counsel’s claim that Manafort evaded taxes on $60 million earned from overseas lobbying and consulting work for a Russian-backed Ukrainian political party.
Earlier this week, Mueller’s star witness and Manafort’s longtime business partner Rick Gates admitted depositing millions of dollars in offshore accounts to hide income from U.S. tax collectors.
Manafort’s defense team previewed the case it is expected to launch Tuesday, by blaming the financial irregularities on Gates. Under tough cross-examination from defense attorneys, Gates maintained that every action he took came at Manafort's direction. The defense also pushed Gates to address allegations that he embezzled "several hundred thousand" dollars from Manafort to finance an apartment in London where Gates had an extra-marital affair.
The defense team is expected soon to identify its witness list, and attorneys declined to say Friday whether they plan to allow Manafort to take the stand in his own defense. Legal experts have told ABC News that is extremely unlikely.
The two parties are expected to present closing arguments this week, and then determine final jury instructions. Both sides have told ABC News they intend to stay in the vicinity of the courthouse until a verdict is reached.
The trial could conclude as early as this week.