Advanced Law & Trial Internship Summit
Our Case: Federal Fraud Investigation
Our Internship Court Case
United States v. Manafort
Manafort's trial in the Eastern District of Virginia began on July 31, 2018, with District Judge T. S. Ellis III presiding. Manafort was charged with various financial crimes including tax evasion, bank fraud, and money laundering.
Manafort was scheduled to be tried on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States, failing to register as a foreign agent, money laundering, witness tampering and making false statements.
In the District of Columbia Manafort plead guilty to two charges: conspiracy to defraud the United States and witness tampering. He also admitted to all other charges against him, both in DC and those for which there was a hung jury at his first trial in Virginia.
In Virginia, the jury found Manafort guilty on 8 of the 18 counts, including five counts of filing false tax returns, two counts of bank fraud, and one count of failing to disclose a foreign bank account.
For a client granted immunity to testify in the United States v. Manafort trials.
Our team worked with lead attorney David P. Weber to read through many complex case documents and prepare one of the trial’s star witnesses for her in-court testimony.
Our witness was one of only five witnesses who were granted immunity by the Special Counsel.
The entire team worked around the clock to help prepare our client to take the stand.
We gained valuable real-life experience as they worked on one of the most prolific cases in modern history.
As interns of Goodwin Weber PLLC, we focused our efforts on the nationally famous Paul Manafort Case.
Witness Evaluation and Preparation
We met with our witness for the Manafort case and were instructed to call her Ms. Jane Doe. In order to prepare her for trial, we first listened to her story. When we met with Ms. Doe, she explained how she first became involved in the case, what actions she took, as well as the effects that this case has had on her current life. We took notes on everything she said to help us prepare her cross-examination.
After meeting with Ms. Doe to discuss the facts of the case, we worked with David P. Weber and his team for the rest of the week to create a meaningful cross-examination.
We gave our cross-examinations to Ms. Doe before the trial in order to prepare her to take the stand.
Our team gained real-life experience as we prepared the witness for trial and cross-examination.
Through this process, we learned about the many different ways to question a witness, as well as the ins and outs of courtroom procedure.
Risk Assessment and Strategies
Attorney David P. Weber and his team taught us about the risks and strategies associated with being an attorney. We learned in depth about “Attorney-Client Privilege,” the difference between a secret and a confidence. We now possess a greater understanding of the ethical responsibilities between lawyers and their clients and how we needed to protect our client. Mr. Weber talked about his practice and shared the assessment risks he keeps in mind when taking on a new client.
Throughout the rest of the week, we focused our attention on learning the strategies used during litigation.
We learned more about the case and were given examples of how rhetorical strategies can be used in practice with great effect.
We successfully incorporated these strategies into our cross-examination which were to be given as a final presentation.
Georgetown University Law Center
Cross-Examination Prep At The
At the end of the week, we performed our cross-examinations of Ms. Doe at the Georgetown University Law Center, Moot Courtroom. Our team had been preparing this cross-examination throughout the entire week by meeting with experts and learning new techniques to ensure that it would be effective preparation for Ms. Doe.
The cross-examinations were set up to resemble the courtroom and procedures that Ms. Doe will encounter when she takes the stand to give her testimony. Our team sat at the counsel table while Ms. Doe took the witness stand. As a team, we had 20 minutes to give our cross-examination of Ms. Doe, and 10 minutes to hear feedback from David P. Weber.
After our cross was given, Ms. Doe stated she felt more prepared herself for the real cross-examination she would have to face as a witness.
We played a crucial part in making sure Ms. Doe was prepared for court. The questions we asked in our cross were some of the ones used in Ms. Does’ trial prep from the Special Counsel's office.
Our Witness Prep Internship Team
Class of 2019
Hi I'm Autumn Proctor. I'm a 17 year old and I live in Maryland. I am going into my senior year of high school. I play varsity lacrosse for my school and I'm team captain! I love law, a lot of my electives at school are law related. I am also a part of my school's National Social Studies Honor Society.
Class of 2018
Katie Thompson has been apart of Leadership Initiatives for a little over two years and is a determined, reliable team member. In the fall, she will be attending George Washington University with acceptance into the Women’s Leadership Program. Although initially starting as a member of the International Business Alliance Program, Katie is now an intern that works with the organization’s partner, GlobalGiving. Katie corresponds with GlobalGiving’s staff to bring in donations to fund various activities within Leadership Initiatives. Outside of Leadership Initiatives, Katie is involved in many different community service projects in her Florida hometown. Katie has worked as a volunteer at Florida Hospital for many years as the Surgical Liaison to aid patients and families during a crucial time. Katie also has coached volleyball for children on a middle school team and has helped run various camps for all grades over the summer. She is passionate about helping others which shows in her extensive commitment to Leadership Initiatives and other various projects. Katie is excited to continue working with Leadership Initiatives in the summer programs to help inspire students like she once was a couple years ago at her first conference. She is committed to making the world a better place for all.
My name is Evelyn McEwen, and I am a rising senior. I challenge myself not only academically but also outside of school, participating in extracurriculars and community service. Several of my top extracurriculars include FFA, FBLA, Mock Trial, Musical, One Acts, and Speech/Forensics. I hold several championship titles in FFA, One Acts, and Speech/Forensics. Someday, I hope to change the world; even more than that, though, I hope that in some small way I already have.
Class of 2020
My name is Molly, I’m a rising Junior at Sandy Spring Friends School, a Quaker college prep school in Maryland. While I have a wide array of of interests, I have had a focus on forensic science, linguistics and graphics. I challenge myself academically as frequently as possible, and enjoy forming meaningful relationships with teachers in order to take advantage of as many opportunities as possible. I’m involved in visual arts, modern dance, and hiking. I hold leadership positions in my school’s rock climbing team team and a leadership program for middle schoolers.
Class of 2021
My name is Lady’ Jordan M., and I am an rising sophomore. I pride myself on being involved, both academically and socially. In my first year of high school I played a lead role in two plays and earned my Varsity letter in Forensics, for placing 3rd in the State. I have been doing Forensics for five years, and I am a member of the Michigan Student State Board of Thespians. Both of which I plan to continue throughout my high school career. I have been in four musicals and three straight plays. I love to act and express myself through my words, which I someday want to gear into becoming a civil litigator and maybe even one day opening my own civil rights firm.
Case Accomplishments And Updates
Ms. Doe's involvement and participation, as a key witness for the Special Counsel's office, directly contributed to Paul Manafort pleading guilty.
Due to our direct involvement in preparing Ms. Doe for the witness stand, Ms. Doe was able to credibly testify to several forms of fraud Mr. Manafort had committed.
Manafort further agreed to "testify fully, completely and truthfully before any and all Grand Juries in the District of Columbia and elsewhere, and at any and all trials of cases or other court proceedings in the District of Columbia and elsewhere."
With Paul Manafort pleading guilty due in part to the testimony of the client, the client has begun working to reclaim their life and become a productive part of their community once again.
Due to the success of the internship summit, program sponsors will be expanding the program to fund whistleblower cases that affect the national discourse.
Leading high school students from across the United States will be able to work directly on cases that impact the nation for years to come.
Goodwin Weber PLLC Internship Highlights
Ms. Doe was later cross-examined by the Special Counsel's office and used our prep work to be prepared for these interviews.
In the final presentation, we gave our cross-examination of Ms. Doe in a real courtroom setting to simulate the actual trial experience.
The witness we prepped was one of only five witnesses who were granted immunity by the Special Counsel.
As a team, we read through many complex case documents and prepared one of the trial’s star witnesses for in-court testimony.
Our team interned for Goodwin Weber PLLC. We worked with top attorney David P. Weber and focused our efforts on the nationally famous Paul Manafort Case.
The United States V. Paul Manafort
Our preparation enabled Ms. Doe to gain an overall better understanding of the case and to appreciate the purpose of her testimony in a broader context.
The preparation assisted in our client developing the factual record advantageously and enabled Ms. Doe to ward off attacks to her credibility.
The detailed witness preparation allowed our client to deal with challenging issues and make certain that the witness had a strategy for addressing difficult questions from opposing counsel.
with the client in Georgetown University's Moot Courtroom
Over 16 hours of witness cross-examination preparation
Legal Expert Panel
Partner at Barnes & Thornburg
Former US Attorney For The District of Columbia
Roscoe C. Howard, Jr.
Public Defender Service
Sarah C. Stiles, Ph.D., J.D.
Roscoe Howard, Jr. is a partner in Barnes & Thornburg’s Litigation Department in their Washington, D.C., office. He is a member of the White Collar and Investigations Practice Group. Dan Pond is a criminal defense attorney who has dedicated his career to working as a public defender representing indigent people at all stages of the criminal justice system, from initial arrest through trial and incarceration, and eventually back into the community.
Professor Sarah Stiles of Georgetown University lead our team to engage in a debate between Roscoe C. Howard, Jr. and Dan Pond on their different points of view of law and their experiences as a criminal defense attorney and a prosecutor. We had the opportunity to ask questions about difficult cases which enabled us to understand the ethical aspects of the justice system better.
We learned about topics such as civil and criminal law, human rights, the distinctions between state, federal, and local laws, felonies and misdemeanors, and other facets of the legal system. We were even briefed on crime scene and homicide investigations. We now have a better understanding of the justice system and ethical and political issues associated with policing.
Two District of Columbia Metropolitan Police Officers visited to discuss how local government and law enforcement officials work in the nation's capital. The discussion was delivered by experienced senior police officers who brought a wealth of theoretical and practical knowledge to enhance our understanding of the law.
Courtney exposed our team to the idea of the school-to-prison pipeline and the ‘War on Drugs’ that targets African American men, women, and children to a greater extent than others in our society.
He brought with him recently released inmates who spoke out about their criminal history and their life before, during, and after prison.
Listening to the returning citizens speak out about their experiences and gave our team a deeper understanding of how important it is that all people are properly represented in the court of law.
National Re-Entry Panel
in Washington, D.C. is a prison reform advocate who was released from prison in 1985.
Courtney Stewart who chairs the National Reentry Network for Returning Citizens