New York's highest court has ended the Manhattan district attorney's attempt to prosecute former 2016 Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, refusing to hear an appeal of the lower courts' rulings the efforts amounted to a violation of the state's double jeopardy law, several outlets reported.
The decision last week let stand lower courts' rulings initially made in 2019 and again by an appeals court in October that Manafort's conviction on similar federal charges – and subsequent pardon – by then-President Donald Trump shielded him from being tried twice on the same charges.
Manafort was convicted in 2018 of several charges and pleaded guilty on others related to income from consulting work he did in Ukraine for a pro-Russia political party.
"As we have said from the time the District Attorney announced charges against Mr. Manafort, this is a case that should never have been brought because the dismissed indictment is a clear violation of New York law," Manafort's lawyer Todd Blanche said in an email to CNBC. "As the trial court held, and the Appellate Division affirmed, the People's arguments 'fall far short' of triggering an exception to double jeopardy that would justify this prosecution."
"We are pleased that the New York Court of Appeals saw no reason to give leave to the District Attorney to appeal the well-reasoned prior decision dismissing the indictment and the Appellate Division's opinion affirming the same."
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