Mueller raid denies Manafort basic constitutional protections

Aug. 11, 2017, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement questioning the reported seizure of attorney-prepared documents from Paul Manafort’s home, contended by Trump attorney John Dowd saying that Mueller had seized “privileged and confidential materials prepared for Mr. Manafort by his counsel to aid him in his cooperation with the Congressional committees”:

“Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s seizure of attorney-client privileged documents from the home of Paul Manafort puts the privilege itself in jeopardy, raising serious constitutional questions about what is a reasonable search under the Fourth Amendment, permitted under the Fifth Amendment’s right not to incriminate oneself and protected by the Sixth Amendment’s guarantee of counsel. The implication of Mueller’s presumptuous raid is that anyone who is the target of an investigation dare not seek legal counsel, otherwise anything they say to their attorney can and will be used against them. This runs counter to more than 200 years of criminal jurisprudence where the right to an attorney was guaranteed. If the prosecution can peek at the innermost thoughts of the potential defendant consulting with legal counsel and the attorney’s own thoughts and recommendations, it destroys the basis of the adversarial court system and any capacity to defend oneself from malicious prosecution, and diminishes the legal system to being little more than Star Chamber, denying Manafort any chance of a fair trial.”

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