Washington (U.S.) September 12 : The United States' Department of Justice (DOJ) has termed former Maricopa County, Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio's case 'moot' and supported Sherrif's request to throw out his contempt conviction.
The controversial former sheriff, an early supporter of President Donald Trump's presidential campaign, was found guilty of criminal contempt in July after he willfully violated a federal judge's order to stop racial profiling.
The White House announced Trump's pardon of Arpaio in a statement in late August. Arpaio called on U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton to reverse his conviction several days after Trump pardoned him. BuzzFeed News reported that the DOJ filed court papers on Monday that support Arpaio's request to throw out his contempt conviction.
"The presidential pardon removes any punitive consequences that would otherwise flow from Defendant's non-final conviction and therefore renders the case moot," DOJ lawyers wrote in the filing.
The agency argues that Arpaio's conviction was rendered "moot" by "the unpredictable grace of a presidential pardon" and said it would be "just and appropriate" for the conviction to be vacated, reported The Hill.
Arpaio was the elected Sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona for 24 years, from 1993 until 2016, when he lost re-election to Democrat Paul Penzone.
Arpaio has been accused of various types of police misconduct, including abuse of power; misuse of funds; failure to investigate sex crimes; improper clearance of cases; unlawful enforcement of immigration laws; and election law violations.
A Federal court monitor was appointed to oversee his office's operations because of complaints of racial profiling.