Manafort Trial Juror Says Single Juror Prevented a Full Conviction

August 23, 2018, 4:19 PM UTC

President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, would have been found guilty of all 18 charges if it weren’t for a single juror holding out, another juror told Fox News. Paula Duncan, the first juror to speak out, said the four days of deliberation were often tense, sometimes resulting in tears.

“We didn’t want it to be hung, so we tried for an extended period of time to convince her,” said Duncan, according to the Associated Press. “But in the end, she held out and that’s why we have 10 counts that did not get a verdict.”

Manafort was convicted of eight counts of financial crimes Tuesday, including bank- and tax-fraud. Judge T.S. Ellis III declared a mistrial on the remaining 10 charges.

A self-described Trump supporter, Duncan said she did not want to find Manafort guilty, but the evidence was “overwhelming.”

“I did not want Paul Manafort to be guilty, but he was,” said Duncan. “And no one is above the law.”

In regards to the prosecution’s star witness and Manafort’s former business partner, Rick Gates, Duncan said the jury did not find his testimony to be credible. She said they decided to “throw out” his testimony, instead focusing on the paperwork.

“He deserves a special place in hell,” Duncan said, Fox News reports. “He was just as guilty as Paul Manafort, maybe even more … I think he would have done anything that he could to preserve himself.”

According to CBS News, Duncan did feel the trial was an attempt to have Manafort turn on Trump for the sake of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

“The charges were legitimate but the prosecution tried to make the case about the Russian collusion right from the beginning and, of course, the judge shut them down on that,” Duncan said, using Trump’s language in referring to the probe as a “witch hunt.”

While she said she didn’t feel like there were many “fellow Republicans” on the jury of 12, Duncan said she felt it was a fair deliberation, with no one’s personal beliefs affecting their interpretations of the evidence.