Paul Manafort and his legal team decided on Tuesday not to present defense witnesses in his trial on fraud charges. Manafort, 69, also told the court that he won’t testify in his own behalf. Prosecutors for Special Counsel Robert Mueller offered 27 witnesses over two weeks. They say that Manafort omitted foreign bank accounts and income from his tax returns, failed to file reports about his overseas accounts, and misled three banks to obtain $20 million in loans.
Manafort’s legal team rested its case on Tuesday, setting the stage for closing arguments before the judge hands the case to jurors for a verdict.
The defense called no witnesses, choosing to rely instead on the team’s cross-examination of government witnesses including Rick Gates, Manafort’s longtime deputy, and several accountants, bookkeepers and bankers who had financial dealings with Manafort.
Manafort is accused of defrauding banks to secure loans and hiding overseas bank accounts and income from U.S. tax authorities.