Judge issues gag order in fraud case after Trump assails staffer on social media

A federal judge in Maryland issued a gag order on Friday in a criminal fraud case in which US President Donald Trump had used his Twitter account to assail a former White House aide.


Judge Deborah K. Chasanow imposed the order upon the request of former White House official Paul Manafort and his longtime associate, Rick Gates. Trump had attacked the duo on Twitter for their alleged involvement in money laundering and fraud.

The order requires all parties in the case to refrain from making public statements that could hamper the jurors’ ability to render an impartial verdict in the case and “maintain an atmosphere of fairness in the courtroom.” The order also includes anyone not directly involved in the case and prohibits attorneys for Manafort and Gates from publicly discussing any plea negotiations and trial strategies.

Since Trump has accused Manafort and Gates of committing fraud against the US, the measures imposed by the judge are important to ensure that those accused are given a fair trial in court. The judge noted that the parties “should be aware that global publication often follows local statements.” Therefore, it is important for all involved to take the necessary measure to ensure that the case is not affected by any outside influence.

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