"My guess is you will see O.J. -type frenzy at this court event", said Michael Caputo, a former Trump aide and longtime Manafort associate, referring to the 1995 O.J. Simpson murder trial.
President Trump denies any collusion with Russian Federation, and today tried to make the case publicly that collusion would not be a crime anyway.
Just as an acquittal would be bad for Mueller, a Manafort conviction would give Mueller's team juice to keep their investigation going.
According to prosecutor Greg Andres, "We don't intend to mention alleged collusion with the Russians", adding "a very small portion of the trial" will mention collusion - but only in connection to the government's claim that Manafort traded on his relationship to Trump to obtain foreign bank loans. Prosecutors say they may call as many as 35 witnesses, including five who have immunity agreements.
Prosecutors have said they will not present evidence of collusion at this trial.
Mr Trump has expressed sympathy for Mr Manafort since the charges were laid, calling him a "nice guy".
A lawyer for Paul Manafort says the former Trump campaign chairman never meant to deceive US authorities about his income or his foreign bank accounts.
He faces twelve different counts, all felonies, which include conspiracy against the United States, failing to register as a foreign agent, making false statements about being a foreign agent, false statements to the Department of Justice, tax fraud, bank fraud, money laundering and more. Having his former campaign chairman, who helped run Trump's campaign at a critical point of the election, in the news so consistently shines a negative light on him.
Flash flood watch extended through Wednesday for Williamsburg region | Williamsburg
Storms will probably pack quite a bit of lightning, so keep that in mind if you're outside when they start. The overnight low is expected to be near 60. "The clouds take over again Friday afternoon ", Lessor said.
Manafort, who is already in custody and could spend the rest of his life in jail, appeared in the federal courtroom in Alexandria, Virginia, in a dark suit with his wife, Kathleen.
Paul Manafort, shown here arriving for a court hearing in D.C. last month, is on trial in federal court in Alexandria.
FILE PHOTO: Former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort departs from U.S. District Court in Washington, U.S., February 28, 2018. "When Mueller came in, he revived that investigation".
Manafort, 69, is the first American charged in the inquiry by the special counsel, Robert Mueller, to maintain his innocence, and to force the prosecutors to prove their case at trial.
Legal experts said Manafort may be hoping to be found not guilty - or holding out hopes of a presidential pardon.
"It seems to me we're seeing deeper ties that Manafort has had financially with his business deals in the Ukraine and with Russian Federation", said Shanlon Wu, a former lawyer for Manafort associate Rick Gates, who pleaded guilty in February and is aiding Mueller's probe.
Mueller has submitted more than 500 pieces of evidence, including tax filings and mortgage statements, and pictures of Manafort's expensive watches and homes. Gates, who worked alongside Manafort as a political consultant, was indicted along with Manafort in October 2017. Three Russian companies have also been charged.
He is scheduled to go on trial in the U.S. capital in September on separate charges brought by Mueller of conspiracy, money laundering and failing to register as an agent of a foreign government.