The judge presiding over Paul Manafort’s criminal trial has granted a request by special counsel Robert Mueller to seal portions of a sidebar conversation between the judge and attorneys during Richard Gates’ testimony this week.
“Sealing a limited portion of the sidebar conference is necessary because it would reveal substantive evidence pertaining to an ongoing government investigation,” Mueller’s team wrote in the motion to seal portions of the transcript on Thursday.
U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis granted the request, sealing the requested portions of the conversation “until the relevant aspect of the investigation is revealed publicly, if that were to occur.”
CNN reported Thursday that the filing referred to a conversation between trial attorneys and the judge after Manafort attorney Kevin Downing asked Gates, “Were you interviewed on several occasions about your time at the Trump campaign?”
Prosecutor Greg Andres objected to the question before Gates replied, and the attorneys huddled with Ellis out of earshot of Gates, the jury and trial attendees, according to CNN.
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