Former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort pleads not guilty to tax fraud charges
Manafort pleaded not guilty to NYC charges
Defense of former Trump chief of staff intend to seek cancellation of indictment
Paul Manafort, Donald Trump’s former chief of staff and convicted in federal court last year for a number of crimes, pleaded not guilty Thursday to charges brought against him by the New York prosecutor’s office..
In total, Manhattan County Attorney Cyrus Vance has filed 16 charges against Manafort, including mortgage fraud, conspiracy and document fraud. According to the prosecution, a former Trump adviser committed these crimes when he tried to get multimillion-dollar loans to buy real estate in New York between 2015 and 2017..
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Manafort’s lawyer Todd Blanche said he intends to seek the cancellation of the indictment on the basis of a second criminal prosecution for the same crime. The charges are based on mortgage applications submitted by Manafort to two banks. The same applications were considered during the federal trial..
Under New York State law, a person can only be convicted twice for the same crime under certain circumstances. According to the defense, the Manafort case does not meet these requirements..
The next court session will take place on October 9th. Manafort will be in federal prison all this time. He is currently serving a 7.5-year sentence for tax and banking fraud and other crimes uncovered in an investigation led by Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller into Russian interference in the 2016 elections..
The federal prosecutor’s office accused Manafort of hiding from the Internal Revenue Service $ 16 million, earned during his work as a consultant to a number of pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine, as well as for providing false information to banks to obtain loans for the purchase of luxury goods.
The charges brought by the state of New York are seen as an attempt to secure a long prison sentence for Manafort, even if the president pardons him. Donald Trump has not previously ruled out such a possibility. The president can pardon people sentenced by federal court, but he does not have such an opportunity for criminals convicted at the state level..
Paul Manafort faces up to 25 years in prison on New York State charges. The Justice Department this month decided that Manafort should remain in federal prison due to concerns for his health and safety. As a result, former Trump adviser will not be transferred to Rikers prison in New York, pending the start of a new trial.
Manafort was transferred to federal prison in Manhattan on June 13 from federal prison in Pennsylvania, where he was held after his conviction in the courts in Virginia and Washington..
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