While President Donald Trump has not played a significant role in the trial, Gates testified on Tuesday that after the election, Manafort recommended a banker who loaned him money to be Trump's Army secretary.
Manafort's former bookkeeper Heather Washkuhn testified last week that Manafort falsely reported to Federal Savings Bank that his company DMP International pulled in $3 million the first nine months of 2016 when it actually lost more than $1 million from January through November. Ellis also criticized the prosecution for presenting evidence of Manafort's extravagant lifestyle, and he also snapped at them for having IRS revenue agent Michael Welch attend court proceedings before taking the stand as an expert witness.
Welch had told jurors that Manafort didn't report at least $16 million on his tax returns between 2010 and 2014.
Defense attorneys then used several hours of cross-examination to try to damage Gates' credibility in the eyes of jurors. "Mr Manafort had the same path".
Day Eight of the Paul Manafort trial brought special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's prosecution team closer to the finish line of its case against the former Trump campaign chairman.
But prosecutor Greg Andres followed up by suggesting that Gates and Manafort were not fully truthful. The firm's director was known to Manafort and Gates as "Doctor K". Rodriguez said she discovered the mortgage by researching a New York City database of property records.
"I acknowledge I had a period of time when I had another relationship", said Gates, who is married and has four children.More news: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey: Alex Jones 'Hasn't Violated Rules'
For most of the trial, Manafort's lawyers have ceded that numerous financial documents he submitted to the IRS, banks, and his accountants contained falsified information.
The case against Manafort has little to do with either man's work for the Trump campaign and there's been no discussion during the trial about whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russian Federation - the central question Mueller's team has tried to answer. The prosecutors on Wednesday said Ellis had approved having them sit in, but the judge screamed at the lawyers in front of the jury, '"Don't ever do that again".
Lisa Kern Griffin, who teaches law at Duke University, said many judges are harsher on the government, fearing that being seen favoring a prosecution could be the basis for a defendant's appeal. Andres sought to rehabilitate Gates with a series of rapid-fire questions about financial machinations underpinning the tax- and bank-fraud case against Manafort. "I have taken responsibility".
He also said he committed credit card and mortgage fraud, falsified a letter for a colleague involved in an investment deal and made false statements in a deposition at Mr Manafort's direction. And the fact that after loaning Manafort millions of dollars Calk became an economic adviser to Trump casts doubt on Trump's famous pledge to "drain the swamp" and puncture the rampant influence peddling in Washington.
"You may put that aside..." Prosecutors allege Manafort used various ways to hide his income, including wiring money from Ukraine to the United States via a bank in Cyprus and listing it as a loan, and laundering almost $1 million through the purchases of Oriental rugs.
Gates finished his testimony Wednesday after admitting that his secret life of cheating on his wife was more extensive than he had indicated earlier. "I thought he was needlessly evasive and argumentative", said Barbara McQuade, a former U.S. Attorney in MI who has been watching the trial and said she observed jurors reacting with negative body language as he testified.
Manafort's conviction would undermine efforts by Trump and some Republican lawmakers to paint Mueller's inquiry as a political witch hunt, while an acquittal would be a setback for Mueller.