Manhattan DA Appeals Ruling In Bid To Revive State-Level Prosecution Of Paul Manafort

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 27: Donald Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, arriving to his arraignment in New York County Criminal Court, plead not guilty to state mortgage fraud charges on June 27, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 27: Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort arrives to his arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court, on June 27, 2019 in New York City. Manafort pleaded not guilty to mortgage fraud and other ... NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 27: Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort arrives to his arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court, on June 27, 2019 in New York City. Manafort pleaded not guilty to mortgage fraud and other criminal charges filed by New York state authorities. (Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images) MORE LESS

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance appealed a December 2019 ruling throwing out a state-level prosecution of Paul Manafort, moving to revive a case that could keep the former Trump campaign chair behind bars even after a potential future Presidential pardon.

A New York state grand jury indicted Manafort on mortgage fraud charges in March 2019, with the charges being unveiled minutes after a D.C. federal judge sentenced the longtime Republican operative to seven years in prison.

Vance’s prosecution was long seen as a lever that would keep Manafort behind bars even as speculation continues that President Trump may issue a pardon for his former campaign manager.

The charges that Vance has pursued line up closely with bank fraud charges on which Manafort was convicted after an August 2018 trial in federal court in the Eastern District of Virginia.

Since that conviction and Manafort’s subsequent abortive plea deal with the special counsel, the former Trump campaign chairman’s legal team has sought to exonerate him outside of the courtroom. Last year’s Ukraine scandal, for which President Trump was impeached, revolved partly around Trump and others pressuring Kyiv to manufacture evidence that Manafort’s prosecution was based on fraudulent documents, and that he, in fact, was the victim of collusion between the DNC and the Ukrainian government.

No evidence has ever surfaced for those allegations.

A Manhattan district judge threw out Vance’s prosecution in December, finding that it violated protections against double jeopardy.

Read the appeal brief here:

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