MICHAEL R. SISAK
NEW YORK (AP) — A New York judge threw out state mortgage fraud charges against Paul Manafort, ruling Wednesday that the criminal case was too similar to one that has already landed President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman in federal prison.
The move was a blow to what had widely been seen as an attempt by Manhattan's district attorney, a Democrat, to hedge against the possibility that Trump would pardon Manafort for federal crimes. Manafort was convicted in two federal cases stemming from his business dealings and is serving a 7½-year prison sentence.
Judge Maxwell Wiley ruled that state law precludes prosecution, citing double jeopardy grounds. Manafort, 70, wasn't in court for Wiley's ruling because of a health problem.