Manafort pleads not guilty again

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Donald Trump's former campaign manager is set to make his first appearance in Alexandria, Virginia, federal court Thursday, where he faces tax and fraud charges brought by the special counsel investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Paul Manafort will go on trial for bank and tax fraud on July 10, a Virginia judge said Thursday, after Manafort pleaded not guilty to an 18-count indictment.

U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis, based in Alexandria, Virginia has set a tentative trial date for July 10.

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In Washington D.C., Manafort is charged with making false statements about his foreign lobbying work for pro-Russia Ukrainian politicians, and engaging in a money laundering conspiracy.

Manafort's former aide in Ukraine and on the Trump campaign, Rick Gates, negotiated a plea deal last month with Mueller, accepting reduced charges in exchange for cooperation in the broader probe into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russians who interfered in the 2016 presidential race.

The trial is one of two on Manafort's schedule in 2018. Last week Manafort pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and money laundering charges and a federal judge in Washington, D.C., set a trial for September 17. It's the second case tied to special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation in which Manafort has pleaded not guilty.

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In the DC charges alone, Manafort faces a likely sentence of more than 15 years to nearly 20 years in prison if found guilty. The split in venues, prosecutors explained, is because the alleged crimes also occurred in the Eastern District. Those funds were used to live a "lavish" lifestyle in the US, prosecutors said. For legal reasons, he has two cases in two courts.

According to the superseding indictment filed by Mueller on February 22, from 2006 through the present, Manafort served as a representative for the Ukrainian government, specifically, Ukraine's President Viktor Yankukovych.

Manafort filed the complaint on January 3 alleging Mueller's Russian Federation probe is overly broad.

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The Justice Department responded with a 35-page brief last week, saying Manafort could not use a civil lawsuit to attack ongoing criminal proceedings.