Former federal prosecutor Gene Rossi said he would never have approved the recent indictment against Paul Manafort, who once served as Donald Trump’s campaign manager in 2016.
Rossi, a Democrat, made his comments during an interview with Hill.TV on Friday.
"In the 30 years with (the Department of Justice), I would never have approved that indictment," Rossi said.
"You have a defendant, 70 years-old, indicted in D.C. and the eastern district of Virginia, two judges made a decision to give him a combined 90 months, and now you have a third indictment by a state prosecutor.”
The latest charges against Manafort came from New York prosecutors and were announced by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance. Manafort was sentenced in the second of two trials stemming from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
The new state charges include attempted mortgage fraud, falsifying business records and conspiracy. CBS News noted Manafort can’t receive a presidential pardon if convicted for state crimes.
"The decision to indict the third time by Cy Vance to me is more political than being a prosecutor and it bothers me," Rossi said. “The purpose of that indictment is just one reason to be a catch-all if the president pardons Paul Manafort."