Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort was transferred to a federal prison in New York City late Monday ahead of his pending state court trial — but only after the Justice Department rejected a local district attorney’s reported bid to move him to the notorious Rikers Island prison complex.
Manafort was instead transferred to the New York Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC), a federal detention facility located in Manhattan.
MCC houses many inmates awaiting trial or sentencing. Among the current inmates are terror suspect Sayfullo Saipov, who allegedly ran down pedestrians with a truck in New York on Oct. 31, 2017, and Cesar Sayoc, the man who allegedly sent package bombs to prominent Democrats. Joaquin Guzman, the notorious drug lord known as “El Chapo,” is reportedly being held at the facility.
Manafort’s transfer came after Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen rejected Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr.’s attempt to re-locate Manafort to Rikers Island.
A senior Justice Department official told Fox News that Manafort’s attorneys contacted the Bureau of Prisons and “raised concerns about his transfer to state custody related to his health and personal safety.”
“Mr. Manafort’s attorneys proposed that he remain in federal custody and be made available to the state when necessary,” the official told Fox News. “In light of New York’s position, and Mr. Manafort’s unique health and safety needs, The Department determined to err in the side of caution by keeping Mr. Manafort in federal custody during the pendency of the state proceedings.”
The official added that Manafort “will be made available to the state whenever needed for his state case,” and that the “arrangement” would not have “any impact” on the state proceedings.
According to the Bureau of Prisons, Manafort’s release date is set for Dec. 25, 2024.