Nov. 8 (UPI) -- A federal judge on Wednesday issued a gag order in the criminal case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and associate Rick Gates.
U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson ordered all parties -- defense attorneys, prosecutors and witnesses -- "to refrain from making statements to the media or in public settings that pose a substantial likelihood of material prejudice to this case."
The two-page order was issued "to safeguard defendants' rights to a fair trial, and to ensure that the court has the ability to seat a jury that has not been tainted by pretrial publicity."
The judge said the limitations are aimed at potential comments "likely to influence the actual outcome of the trial " and "prejudice the jury."
Last week, the judge urged attorneys to make their arguments in court and "not on the courthouse steps." One of Manafort's attorneys called the charges "ridiculous."
Last month, Manafort and Gates were charged with conspiracy, money laundering and acting as unregistered foreign agents by special counsel Robert Mueller as part of his investigation into potential Russian interference in the 2016 election, and collusion with Donald Trump's campaign.
Manafort, 68, and Gates, 45, have pleaded not guilty.
Monday, Manafort and Gates were ordered to remain under house arrest until the defense and prosecution reached a bail agreement.
The next hearing for Manafort and Gates is scheduled for December to discuss a trial date. Jackson has proposed a date of May 7.