Appeals court refuses to throw out Joe Arpaio's guilty verdict after Trump pardon

Source: The Hill | February 27, 2020 | J. Edward Moreno

A federal appeals court has refused to expunge the criminal record of former Maricopa County, Ariz., Sheriff Joe Arpaio after President Trump pardoned him during his first year in office.

Arpaio, 87, was convicted in 2017 of criminal contempt of federal court in a racial profiling case after disobeying a judge’s order to stop immigration raids in his capacity as sheriff with county taxpayer funds. He was pardoned by Trump weeks after the conviction.

A panel of three judges on the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday upheld a lower court’s decision to not set aside Arpaio’s guilty conviction.

“The district court’s judgment dismissing Arpaio’s criminal proceeding with prejudice and denying vacatur of the finding of guilt is affirmed,” Judge Jay Bybee wrote in the ruling. “Because Arpaio’s challenges to the district court’s finding of guilt are moot, we do not address them.”

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