“A federal judge in Washington on Thursday rejected Manafort’s request to bar as evidence business records seized by the FBI from a self-storage unit he was using in Virginia a day after agents got access to the unit from Manafort’s assistant on May 27, 2017.””
This is actually pretty funny, let’s see if we can follow the plot outline!
“Manafort’s lawyers had argued that the files seized from the storage locker should not be allowed to be used at his trial before [Federal Judge, Amy Berman Jackson] on the grounds that the search was illegal.”
“The lawyers noted that “agents entered the storage unit and looked around without a warrant the day before they presented their request for a warrant to the court,” Jackson wrote in her order Thursday.
“While they did not open the boxes or review the papers filed in the drawers on that day, they described the exterior of the containers they observed, including the labels on the boxes, in the warrant application,” Jackson wrote.”
So how did the agents gain entry to the storage unit without a warrant?!
“[Federal Judge Berman] noted that “law enforcement agents do not need a warrant to enter a location if they have voluntary consent,” as they did from Manafort’s assistant…
“The judge’s ruling noted that Manafort’s assistant had leased the storage unit, unlocked the door for the agents and gave them written permission to enter it.”
Oh, sweet Jeebus. The guy holding the lease unlocked the door, let them in, AND gave them written permission, and even then they went to a judge and got a warrant. And Manafort’s lawyers are trying to claim that the evidence was illegally seized. I’d say this was like a Marx Brothers script set in a courtroom, but those at least had a lot of funny wordplay
I’m amazed that the judge didn’t order Manafort’s lawyers to take remedial law school. Say, I wonder if Wrong-Again Rudy might want to do some pro-bono work for Manafort. I mean, Paulie could hardly do worse.