New York Judge Maxwell Wiley dismissed state charges against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort Wednesday on double-jeopardy grounds. Manafort had been scheduled to appear in criminal court Wednesday on charges of mortgage fraud and other financial crimes filed in New York state court by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr.
The Manhattan district attorney's office plans to appeal the decision. "We will appeal today's decision and will continue working to ensure that Mr. Manafort is held accountable for the criminal conduct against the People of New York that is alleged in the indictment," Manhattan district attorney spokesman Danny Frost said in a statement.
An attorney for Manafort, Todd Blanche, issued a statement saying: "We have said since the day this indictment was made public that it was politically motivated and violated New York's statutory double jeopardy law. ... This indictment should never have been brought, and today's decision is a stark reminder that the law and justice should always prevail over politically-motivated actions."
The ex-Trump campaign chairman is already serving a 7-year sentence after being of bank fraud, tax evasion, conspiring against the U.S. and conspiring to obstruct justice.
Manafort, who had been, did not appear for the hearing. He was released from the hospital Wednesday afternoon and returned to prison. Blanche said Manafort was "doing OK. He is happy."
On Tuesday, Blanche said Manafort's own family did "not have a full understanding" of his medical condition because the Bureau of Prisons would not provide "any information" about Manafort's condition, citing his safety and privacy.
A New York grand jury had charged Manafort with 16 counts including residential mortgage fraud, conspiracy, falsifying business records and a scheme to defraud. The indictment was filed in the New York State Supreme Court in March.
Had Manafort been tried and convicted in New York, he would not have been eligible to receive a presidential pardon for state crimes.
Pat Milton, Anisah Jabar and Clare Hymes contributed to this report.
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