Judge Ellis spent about almost two hours instructing the jurors on the ins and outs of the case. In particular, he reminded them that the defendant is not obligated to prove anything.
Judge Ellis told the jury to acquit Manafort "if the evidence leaves you with a reasonable doubt". He also instructed the jury to ignore any impression they might have inferred about the Department of Justice's motives or lack of motives. Jurors are not allowed to use electronic devices, Ellis said. Ellis declined to read aloud the whole list of banned devices. "Good heavens, this list is outdated. No Blackberrys," Ellis joked.
Ellis also encouraged the jurors not to talk to the media after the trial is over. "I might suggest that you have a duty of confidentiality," Ellis said, though he stressed that it is not an enforceable order. "I hope you take it seriously."
Four juror alternates were also dismissed.
Twelve main jurors will return to court at 9:30 a.m. tomorrow to start deliberations.