Since then, Manafort's lawyers have said they can not properly prepare for a trial scheduled to start later this month with a client jailed two hours outside of Washington, D.C. He is allowed to write emails and make an unlimited number of 15-minute calls to his lawyers. "It is surprising and confusing when the counsel identifies a problem and then opposes the most logical solution to that problem", Ellis wrote Wednesday, adding, "Defense counsel has not identified any general or specific threat to defendant's safety at the Alexandria Detention Center".
Lawyers working for Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller objected Wednesday to Manafort's bid to delay the trial scheduled for July 25 in Alexandria, Va. He was transferred to a jail in Alexandria, Virginia, from a facility about 100 miles away so he could be closer to the courthouse where he will be tried on charges of bank and tax fraud.
During his time at Northern Neck jail, ABC News reported that Manafort stayed in a cell by himself in the facility's VIP section, surrounded by walls painted in two shades of brown: bagel and biscuit.
Ellis will hear arguments next week on Manafort's request to postpone the Alexandria trial as well as his bid to have the trial moved to Roanoke or Richmond, Virginia, where his lawyers say press coverage has been less intense. A three-judge federal appeals court panel on Thursday denied Manafort's request to be released pending his appeal of his detention. "There is a strategy to it, even in failure, but there's a hope to it". They say Manafort has not been required to wear a prison uniform, and has a private telephone, a separate workspace and access to two laptops. In court papers filed July 5, his legal team said it was "effectively impossible" for Manafort to prepare because he is "housed in solitary confinement" and locked in his cell 23 hours a day excluding visits from his attorneys.
Manafort's prosecution spawned out of U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into possible collusion between Russian Federation and Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.
Ellis, the judge in the Virginia case, has directed lawyers for both sides to appear on July 17, to argue about whether the case should be delayed or moved.
The court document claims Manafort has "unique privileges" at the Warsaw jail.
A judge ordered the transfer after Manafort's lawyers complained it was hard for them and him to prepare for his trial because he was being held in solitary confinement for 23 hours per day in a Warsaw, Virginia, jail located a two-hour drive from his attorneys' Washington office. "The dissonance between defendant's motion to continue and motion opposing transfer. can not be easily explained or resolved".