The Justice Department will not attempt to retry its much-maligned case against former Sen. John Edwards on campaign finance charges.
Two weeks ago, a jury in Greensboro, N.C. found Edwards not guilty on one count of accepting illegal campaign contributions and could not reach a verdict on the remaining five counts. This afternoon, federal prosecutors filed a motion to dismiss the remaining charges.
Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division Lanny Breuer released a statement on Wednesday, saying that “in the interest of justice, we have decided not to retry Mr. Edwards on those counts.”
The statement reads: ”We knew that this case – like all campaign finance cases – would be challenging. But it is our duty to bring hard cases when we believe that the facts and the law support charging a candidate for high office with a crime. Last month, the government put forward its best case against Mr. Edwards, and I am proud of the skilled and professional way in which our prosecutors from the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina conducted this trial. The jurors could not reach a unanimous verdict on five of the six counts of the indictment, however, and we respect their judgment. In the interest of justice, we have decided not to retry Mr. Edwards on those counts.”