Fox News is now reporting that Paul Manafort will likely serve his seven year prison sentence in solitary confinement at New York City’s Rikers Island; a decision Alan Dershowitz describes as “abusive and possibly illegal.”
“The decision to move Paul Manafort, the former Trump campaign chairman who was sentenced earlier this year to nearly seven years in prison in connection with two federal cases, from the decent federal prison to which he was sentenced to solitary confinement to the dangerous hell hole that is New York City’s Rikers Island seems abusive and possibly illegal,” writes Alan Dershowitz.
“I know Rikers well having spent time there visiting numerous defendants accused of murder and other violent crimes. It is a terrible place that no one should ever be sent to,” he adds. “It should be shut down. It is so bad that defendants often plead guilty, even if they have defensible cases, simply to move to a safer and better prison.”
“Whatever the reason for the transfer, it seems like the selective application of the law for partisan purposes. The tactic of squeezing a potential witness by making his imprisonment unbearably harsh is generally reserved for mafioso, terrorists and other violent criminals who may have evidence against their bosses,” Dershowitz concludes.
A federal judge added an additional 43 months to former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s prison term earlier this year; making his total incarceration time 7 ½ years for tax and bank fraud charges as well as witness tampering.
The decision came weeks after Manafort was sentenced to 47 months in prison for charges uncovered -yet unrelated- to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian officials during the 2016 election.
— The Hill (@thehill) March 13, 2019
“I am sorry for what I have done and for all of the activities that have gotten us here today,” said Manafort during the sentencing. “I know that it was my conduct that brought me here today. For that, I am remorseful.”
The additional time is related to charges of witness tampering and foreign laundering.
Read Dershowitz’ full response here.