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Former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort blocked from flight for invalid passport

Manafort was stopped from flying to Dubai, according to Miami-Dade police.
Paul Manafort exits the E. Barrett Prettyman Federal Courthouse on Feb. 28, 2018, in Washington.
Paul Manafort leaves federal court in Washington on Feb. 28, 2018.Drew Angerer / Getty Images file

Former Trump campaign chairman and presidential pardon recipient Paul Manafort was blocked from leaving the country Sunday because his U.S. passport was not valid, a Miami-Dade police spokesperson told NBC News on Wednesday.

Manafort, 72, was attempting to fly from Miami to Dubai on a 9:10 p.m. Emirates airline flight when he was denied boarding because of an issue with his passport, the police spokesperson said, confirming a report.

The spokesperson said Customs and Border Protection officials on the scene denied his boarding. A CBP spokesman declined to comment, saying, "For privacy reasons, U.S. Customs and Border Protection is unable to discuss a specific individual’s arrival or departure into or from the United States."

Manafort’s passport had been revoked upon his arrest in October 2017 as part of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Manafort was never charged with cooperating with the Russians.

An attorney for Manafort declined to comment on the passport incident.

Manafort, who briefly ran Donald Trump's presidential campaign in 2016, resigned amid questions about his ties to the then-pro-Russian government in Ukraine. He initially cooperated with Mueller's investigators, but the arrangement blew up when they accused Manafort of lying to them. He was eventually convicted of federal fraud and tax charges and sentenced to 47 months in prison in 2019.

Trump gave Manafort a full pardon during his final weeks in office.