U.S. judge overrules defense leniency request in Manafort sentencing

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (Reuters) – The U.S. judge in the Virginia trial of President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort on Thursday overruled a defense request that could have led to some leniency in his sentencing for bank and tax fraud.

U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis, who could effectively deliver a life sentence to Manafort, 69, said the veteran Republican political consultant should not receive credit for accepting responsibility for his crimes.

Further, before recessing Manafort’s sentencing hearing for 15 minutes, he sided with the government in saying the sentencing guidelines were properly calculated. Prosecutors have said they would call for 19-1/2 to 24 years in prison.

Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Writing by Tim Ahmann; Editing by Eric Beech

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