Manafort Can Keep Hamptons, New York Homes After Trump Pardon

U.S. prosecutors are no longer seeking to seize a Hamptons mansion and two New York City properties from Paul Manafort following his pardon by former President Donald Trump.

Prosecutors said Friday they will dismiss a 2019 preliminary forfeiture order entered against Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, after he was sentenced to 7½ years in prison for financial crimes and conspiracy.

In a court filing, they said Trump’s Dec. 23 pardon of Manafort meant the U.S. will no longer seek Manafort’s sprawling house in Water Mill, New York, his brownstone in Brooklyn, or his apartment on the edge of Manhattan’s Chinatown.

“These three real properties will not be under restraint in connection with the prosecution and conviction” of Manafort, according to the filing. The pardon has relieved Manafort of “any further obligation to make payments to satisfy the $11 million monetary judgment of forfeiture,” according to the filing.

Prosecutors said they will also relinquish claims to assets seized in an account at Federal Savings Bank.

An attorney for Manafort, 71, had no immediate comment on the filing. A federal judge in Washington approved the dismissal of the forfeiture requests on Friday.

Woodlawn’s Claim

The order does not apply to other Manafort assets that were already forfeited and sold, including an apartment in Trump Tower in Manhattan, a bank account and a life insurance policy.

Manafort may still have to fight with his creditors before recovering the properties.

One creditor is a Nevada company called Woodlawn LLC, which lent Manafort’s family $1 million in August 2017, just weeks after the FBI raided his home, and secured its loan with a claim on the Chinatown apartment. Woodlawn, backed by southern California businessman Ari Zieger, has been seeking to collect on its loan since at least 2019, as detailed in a series of Bloomberg News stories. A lawyer for Woodlawn didn’t immediately return an email seeking comment.

Manafort was prosecuted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller as part of his probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election. He was sentenced in both federal court in Virginia and in Washington, where he pleaded for mercy from the judge. He told the court that he and his wife, then 66, depend on each other.

“She needs me, and I need her,” Manafort said. “This case has already taken everything away from me already -- my properties, my cash, my life insurance, my trust accounts for my children and grandchildren. Please let my wife and me be together.”

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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