President Trump issued full pardons to 15 individuals – including a pair convicted of lying during the Mueller investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election – and commuted the sentences of an additional five people on Tuesday.
Trump campaign advisor George Papadapoulous and Alex van der Zwaan were both issued pardons.
Papadapoulous pled guilty in 2017 to lying to FBI agents regarding contact with people with alleged ties to Russian officials.
Van der Zwaan also pled guilty to lying to Mueller investigators and was sentenced to 30 days in prison.
A statement from the White House Press Secretary indicates “Papadopoulos was charged with a process-related crime” and that the pardon “helps correct the wrong that Mueller’s team inflicted on so many people.”
The statement also calls Van der Zwaan’s incident a “process-related crime” and notes his cooperation with the Special Counsel’s team.
Thank you, Mr. President!!! This means the world to me and my family!
— George Papadopoulos (@GeorgePapa19) December 23, 2020
Some Other Notable Pardons From President Trump
Aside from the Mueller investigation process crime victims, President Trump issued pardons and commutations for some non-violent drug offenders, in part at the urging of Alice Johnson.
On the list was Weldon Angelos, a criminal justice reform advocate who was sentenced to 55 years in prison for selling marijuana and carrying a handgun while doing so.
The sentence, so egregious that the judge in the case called it “unjust and cruel and even irrational,” was due to federal mandatory minimum laws.
President Trump pardoned reform advocate @weldon_angelos
and he commuted the sentences of several women championed by @candoclemency and others, including Judith Negron, Tynice Nichole Hall and Crystal Munoz
Munoz, mother of two, served 12 years for pot https://t.co/cuYXjmOPF7
— Steven Nelson (@stevennelson10) December 23, 2020
Alice Johnson herself was the recipient of a Trump pardon in August after he had commuted her prison sentence two years earlier; she was serving a life sentence for a first-time, non-violent drug offense.
Two border patrol agents were also granted pardons, after having been charged and convicted of assault, using a firearm during a crime of violence, and deprivation of civil rights, after having shot an illegal alien trafficking 700 pounds of marijuana whom they thought was armed.
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) December 23, 2020
Could He Pardon Edward Snowden or Julian Assange?
Democrat Tulsi Gabbard made a recent appeal for President Trump to pardon Edward Snowden and Julian Assange while launching an attack on the “deep state.”
“Since you’re giving pardons to people, please consider pardoning those who, at great personal sacrifice, exposed the deception and criminality of those in the deep state,” Gabbard tweeted.
Neither made the initial list of pardons by the President.
.@realDonaldTrump Since you’re giving pardons to people, please consider pardoning those who, at great personal sacrifice, exposed the deception and criminality of those in the deep state. https://t.co/aeXklUsNSd
— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) November 26, 2020
Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, provided a better picture of how U.S. wars were being conducted, while Snowden revealed the massive spying program at the National Security Agency.
Are there others deserving of a pardon by the President?
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