Brennan Criticizes "Lenient" Manafort Sentence: "Says A Lot More About Judge Ellis," "Mind-Boggling"

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Former CIA director John Brennan criticized Judge Ellis for the lenient sentence he gave to someone who defrauded the government like Paul Manafort.

"It's an extraordinarily lenient sentence in light of the extent and scope of Mr. Manafort's criminality," Brennan told MSNBC host Chris Matthews. "It just shows that there's a lot of power invested in the hands of justice. I think this sentence says a lot more about Judge Ellis than it does about Paul Manafort."

"Well that is what is mindboggling why he would say that Paul Manafort has had an otherwise blameless life. Paul Manafort has a demonstrated track record of criminal, unethical, unprincipled behavior," Brennan said.





CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HOST: What do you make of this? As we say in our business segway, we can't ignore what just happened tonight... this judge apparently gave this guy a pretty good deal today.

JOHN BRENNAN, FORMER CIA DIRECTOR: It's an extraordinarily lenient sentence in light of the extent and scope of Mr. Manafort's criminality. It just shows that there's a lot of power invested in the hands of justice. I think this sentence says a lot more about Judge Ellis than it does about Paul Manafort.

MATTHEWS: What's it say?

BRENNAN: It says that he has an attitude towards a person of Paul Manafort's ilk who really has defrauded the government, as was demonstrated.

MATTHEWS: Does he know what a mercenary is, this judge? I mean a guy who basically took on a career to make a lot of money defending the bad guys in central Europe. You're basically taking people who are -- you're working for someone who wants to crush the independence of Ukraine on behalf of a tyrant, Putin.

BRENNAN: That's why the guidelines, you know, were calling for many more years. Guidelines are used for a reason. But obviously, Judge Ellis felt that he could decide just unilaterally on this one.

MATTHEWS: He basically said the guy has had an otherwise blameless except for jury tampering.

BRENNAN: Well that is what is mindboggling why he would say that Paul Manafort has had an otherwise blameless life. Paul Manafort has a demonstrated track record of criminal, unethical, unprincipled behavior.

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