Reporter's Notebook

Attorneys In Manafort Case Get A Warning From DC Judge About Facial Expressions

Kevin Downing. (TPM Illustration. Photo by Getty Images/Mark Wilson)
August 28, 2018 1:17 pm

After much ado in Paul Manafort’s Virginia case about the facial expressions attorneys made, the judge overseeing the D.C. proceedings warned them against being so expressive when that case goes to trial next month.

U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, at pretrial hearing, cautioned that visible reactions from the attorneys are “not going to happen when there is a jury in the box.”

You may recall that such visible reactions from the attorneys also got a call-out from U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis in Virginia. Ellis, early into the trial, told them to “rein in their facial expressions” but later on, in a private bench conference, scolded prosecutor Greg Andres for looking down instead of looking at the judge.

“I don’t want to get in trouble for some facial expression,’’ Andres said, according to a transcript obtained by Bloomberg. “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.”

A juror from that case told Fox News that the jury observed the prosecutors looking bored and even catnapping during the Virginia trial.

Andres will also be on the Mueller team for the D.C. trial, but he will be joined by Andrew Weissmann and Jeannie Rhee, who did not argue for the prosecution during the Virginia trial.

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