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Juror: One Holdout Stymied Manafort Conviction


This courtroom sketch shows Paul Manafort listening to U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III at federal court in Alexandria, Va., Aug. 21, 2018, with a few of the jurors show at left.

A juror in the trial of President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman said all of the jurors except one wanted to convict Paul Manafort on all 18 criminal charges against him.

Juror Paula Duncan, who identified herself as a Trump supporter, said in an televised interview the jurors presented evidence that persuaded them Manafort was guilty to the lone holdout "again and again. "But Duncan, the first juror to speak publicly about the case, said the holdout continued to have reasonable doubt about Manafort's guilt.

"We all tried to convince her to look at the paper trail," Duncan told Fox News Wednesday. "The evidence was overwhelming. I did not want Paul Manafort to be guilty, but he was, and no one's above the law."

Manafort was convicted of eight of 18 charges: two counts of bank fraud, five counts of tax fraud and one charge of failing to disclose foreign bank accounts.

The charges were brought by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating Russian meddling in the election and potential obstruction of justice. They were unrelated to the core of Mueller's investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to subvert the 2016 U.S. presidential election in Trump's favor.

After four days of deliberations, the jury of six women and six men could not reach consensus on the remaining 10 counts, forcing Judge T.S. Ellis to declare a mistrial on those counts.

Ellis said he received death threats and did not release the jurors' names because of safety concerns. But Duncan said she was not worried about her safety and thus decided to speak out.

"I thought that the public, America, needed to know how close this was and the evidence was overwhelming," Duncan said.

Duncan offered her observations of the attorneys on both sides of the case.

She said the prosecution seemed "bored," saw two of them dozing at times, and that she believed their real intention was to "get the dirt on Trump."

Manafort's lawyers, she said, gave short cross-examinations, seldom objected and appeared "easy going."

Duncan said deliberations were sometimes heated, but that politics did not influence their decisions.

"I think we all went in there like we were supposed to and assumed that Mr. Manafort was innocent. We did due diligence. We applied the evidence, our notes, the witnesses, and we came out with guilty verdicts on the eight counts."