Great Britain

Manhattan DA appeals dismissal of Paul Manafort’s fraud charges in New York state court

Manafort was charged in New York state court with residential mortgage fraud and related charges in March 2019.

A state judge threw out those charges in December 2019, saying they overlapped with bank fraud charges that Manafort was also facing in federal court. Double jeopardy in the US prevents someone from being tried twice for the same or similar charges in court.  

Last month, a New York appeals court reaffirmed the decision by the state judge to throw out the charges but the Manhattan DA has since decided to appeal that ruling.

In a letter sent to the state’s chief judge, the DA’s office asked for permission to challenge the intermediate appeal court’s decision last month to uphold throwing out the charges. The office was taking the matter to New York’s Court of Appeals, its highest appeals court in the state.

The move by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr, a Democrat, to appeal the dismissal charges of Manafort comes as Mr Trump is poised to leave the White House in January. 

The president has power to issue pardons against federal charges but not state ones, suggesting why the Manhattan DA was pushing to pursue charges against Manafort at the state level.

Manafort was convicted in 2018 by a federal jury in Virginia on charges of bank fraud and tax fraud. 

The case was brought forward by Special Counsel Robert Mueller from his investigation into the Trump campaign’s reported ties with Russia during the 2016 campaign.

Manafort was sentenced to more than seven years in federal prison but the 71-year-old was released to home confinement in May due to Covid-19 concerns. 

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