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Paul Manafort leaving the courthouse. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Newly released court documents explain that President Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort is being kept in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day ahead of his July 25 trial, citing that his safety cannot be guaranteed otherwise while in prison.

The big picture: Manafort's bail was revoked by a judge, and his legal team is currently appealing that decision arguing that being imprisoned in such a manner at a facility two hours away from his legal team is hampering his ability to defend himself. Manafort has been indicted on charges including money laundering and bank fraud.

The details: The defense's response to Manafort's appeal stated that, during his previous pretrial release period, the former campaign manager attempted to obstruct justice. It also argues that Manafort did nothing to prove there was an error in the judgement.

  • The latest filing explains that Manafort "is locked in his cell for at least 23 hours per day (excluding visits from his attorneys), at a facility approximately two hours from his legal team."

The backdrop: Manafort had been on house arrest from October to June 15 before he was moved to Northern Neck Regional jail. Before he was relocated, he was accused of repeatedly contacting potential witnesses in an effort to sway their testimonies.

Go deeper

Retail sales flat in April after huge surge in March

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

April retail sales in the U.S. were unchanged from March, which saw a surge revised up to 10.7%, according to the latest Commerce Department report published Friday.

Why it matters: The U.S. has been entering a period of growing optimism in the wake of the vaccine rollout, falling new COVID-19 cases and deaths, and a slowly recovering labor market. Retail sales were up 51% year-over-year compared to April 2020.

Policy group lays groundwork for "net negative" emissions tech

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

A new policy roadmap provides Congress and the White House with ways to support the growth of methods to pull carbon dioxide from the atmosphere using everything from existing forests to direct air capture machines.

Driving the news: Recent climate studies, such as the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's 1.5-degree report, have pointed to the clear need for society to pursue strategies for driving carbon emissions into negative territory by the latter half of the century.

New CDC mask guidance tests risk tolerance

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The CDC announced Thursday that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear masks indoors.

Why it matters: The U.S. is entering a new stage in the pandemic where the public — vaccinated or not — will need to assess its own risk tolerance in shared spaces.

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