Paul Manafort Indicted by Manhattan DA's Office - Rolling Stone
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Paul Manafort, Fresh Off Receiving His Second Prison Sentence, Is Charged With Even More Crimes

The latest indictment looks like an effort to ensure the 69-year-old serves time in jail even if Trump pardons him

Paul Manafort leaves Federal District Court in Washington, . Manafort, President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, and Manafort's business associate Rick Gates pleaded not guilty to felony charges of conspiracy against the United States and other countsTrump Russia Probe, Washington, USA - 30 Oct 2017

Paul Manafort at Federal District Court in Washington


First-ballot hall-of-fame criminal Paul Manafort has been indicted yet again. On Wednesday morning, the Manhattan district attorney’s office charged President Trump’s former campaign manager with 16 state felonies, including mortgage fraud, falsifying business records and more. The indictment was announced almost immediately after Judge Amy Berman Jackson sentenced Manafort to more than six years in prison for a variety of federal crimes. Combined with the 47-month sentence handed down last week by Judge T.S. Ellis for a separate variety of federal crimes, Manafort stands to serve nearly eight years total in federal prison.

“No one is beyond the law in New York,” said Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance. “Following an investigation commenced by our office in March 2017, a Manhattan grand jury has charged Mr. Manafort with state criminal violations which strike at the heart of New York’s sovereign interests, including the integrity of our residential mortgage market.”

The timing of the DA’s indictment appears to indicate an effort to ensure Manafort serves time in prison even if he is pardoned by the president. Trump only has the power to clear people of federal crimes, and would be unable to interfere with a prison sentence resulting from the state charges brought by the DA’s office.

The president has repeatedly praised Manafort on Twitter, while railing against the Justice Department. “I feel very badly for Paul Manafort and his wonderful family,” Trump wrote after Manafort was found guilty on a number of federal charges last August. “‘Justice’ took a 12 year old tax case, among other things, applied tremendous pressure on him and, unlike Michael Cohen, he refused to ‘break’ – make up stories in order to get a ‘deal.’ Such respect for a brave man!”

After Manafort was sentenced by Judge Ellis last week, the president falsely tweeted that Ellis and Manafort’s lawyer “stated loudly and for the world to hear” that Trump didn’t collude with Russia. (Ellis only said that collusion did not factor into Manafort’s sentence.) On Wednesday, Manafort’s lawyer again claimed there was “no collusion,” which, again, was not relevant to the charges for which Manafort was sentenced.

Reports have indicated that Trump has considered the idea of pardoning Manafort in the past, and the White House has since refused to take the prospect off the table. During a rare question-and-answer session with reporters on Tuesday, Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that Trump will “make his decision” about whether to pardon Manafort “when he’s ready.”

Speaking to reporters Wednesday, the president said he feels “very badly” for his former campaign manager. As to the idea of a pardon, Trump said, “I have not even given it any thought as of this moment.”

In This Article: Donald Trump, Russia


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