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NYC judge to decide Manafort 'double jeopardy' claims in December

By
Clyde Hughes
Paul Manafort arrives at federal court in Washington, D.C., on June 15, 2018, to face federal fraud charges, for which he was later convicted. File Photo Ken Cedeno/UPI
Paul Manafort arrives at federal court in Washington, D.C., on June 15, 2018, to face federal fraud charges, for which he was later convicted. File Photo Ken Cedeno/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 9 (UPI) -- A New York City judge said Wednesday he will decide in December whether prosecutors can try Paul Manafort, President Donald Trump's former campaign manager, on state mortgage fraud charges that are similar to counts for which he's already been convicted on the federal level.

Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Maxwell Wiley said he will rule on the issue on Dec. 18. Manafort, who's serving more than seven years in prison for the federal conviction, was not required to appear at Wednesday's hearing.

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Manafort's attorneys have challenged the state charges and said they violate the constitutional amendment that bars double jeopardy, or a defendant from being tried twice for the same crime.

The former campaign manager faces more trouble in Washington, D.C., where the Justice Department and a Chicago bank are fighting over his assets. The two entities said in a filing Tuesday they are unsure how to settle bank interests in three Manafort assets -- a $10 million Long Island, N.Y., home, a $4 million New York City home and $2.5 million in his bank account.

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The federal government is attempting to seize the assets, but the bank argues it's a victim of Manafort's and should not have to pay for his legal consequences.

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Attorneys for the Chicago Federal Saving Bank have asked U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson to declare it an "innocent" owner of Manafort's assets.

The Justice Department has argued bank CEO Stephen Calk helped approve Manafort for a $16 million loan and overlooked questions about his finances. Calk was indicted in federal court in May, accused of seeking leverage over Manafort in proposed loans to win a senior post in Trump's administration.

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The court filing said the two sides have been unable to reach an agreement because they have "conflicting views of how this matter should proceed."

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