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Department of Justice agrees with Trump’s pardon of Arpaio

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

PHOENIX — The Department of Justice said Monday it agreed with President Donald Trump’s decision to pardon former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

According to court paperwork, the department said the pardon “removes any punitive consequences that would otherwise flow from defendant’s non-final conviction and therefore renders the case moot.”

In other words, the judgment against Arpaio should be vacated and he should face no further punishment.

Last month, KTAR News 92.3 FM legal analyst Monica Lindstrom wrote that she expected U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton to vacate her decision to convict Arpaio of misdemeanor contempt of court.

Should she do so, the former sheriff would be deemed an innocent man under the law.

Bolton was expected to make her decision during an Oct. 4 hearing.

Arpaio was found guilty of misdemeanor contempt of court for prolonging immigration patrols for nearly a year and a half after he was ordered to stop them.

Trump pardoned Arpaio late last month, saying the former lawman spent his life protecting the public from crime and illegal immigration.

“Arpaio is now 85 years old, and after more than 50 years of admirable service to our nation, he is a worthy candidate for a presidential pardon,” a White House statement said.

Arpaio’s case has cost Maricopa County taxpayers a pretty penny. Earlier this year, it was estimated that court costs in his case would be nearly $100 million.

Last week, the county earmarked $1 million to pay people who were illegally detained by Arpaio’s deputies.

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