NEW YORK (Reuters) – Paul Manafort, U.S. President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman who was convicted of tax and bank fraud, may be transferred to Rikers Island jail in New York to face state criminal charges, a person familiar with the matter said.
FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort arrives at a hearing at U.S. District Court in Washington, U.S., January 16, 2018. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas/File Photo
Manafort, 70, is serving a combined sentence of 7-1/2 years in prison from two separate federal criminal cases, the longest term of anyone stemming from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election and contacts between Moscow and Trump’s campaign.
The veteran Republican political operative, who was paid millions of dollars for his work for pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine, had been expected to be transferred to New York state custody in June, another person familiar with the matter said.
The sources spoke on condition of anonymity.
Defendants facing charges brought by the Manhattan District Attorney are typically held at Rikers Island, a troubled jail complex that handles about 9,000 people a day, another city jail known as the Tombs, or Bellevue hospital, if a defendant has a medical condition.
According to the New York City Department of Corrections, a judge will decide whether he will be entering their custody.
A spokeswoman for the Manhattan district attorney’s office did not immediately respond to requests for comment. A lawyer for Manafort did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Manafort was charged by prosecutors in New York in March with residential mortgage fraud and other felonies, as state lawmakers moved to ensure that he can be prosecuted even if he receives a presidential pardon from Trump. Presidents possess the power to issue pardons for federal crimes, not state crimes.
Prosecutors said the charges involved a scheme in which Manafort and others falsified records to obtain millions of dollars related to property loans. Manafort faces up to 25 years in prison on the three most serious charges in the latest indictment, residential mortgage fraud in the first degree.
Manafort was convicted by a Virginia jury last year on tax and bank fraud charges and pleaded guilty in Washington to charges including unregistered lobbying and witness tampering.
Reporting by Nathan Layne and Karen Freifeld; Writing by Doina Chiacu; Editing by Will Dunham