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Clemency and Pardon

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WikiLeaks: Karzai Pardoned Politically Connected Drug Dealers

Localização: 
Afghanistan
A confidential diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks says Afghan President Hamid Karzai has freed dangerous detainees and pardoned suspected drug dealers because they had connections to powerful figures.
Publication/Source: 
The Associated Press
URL: 
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hvyPv5TcERTnPkrDhfbCDMujnmDA?docId=a75bf55ab5ac4ce9b033f1019dfe98cc

Townhall Meeting to Support Clarence Aaron

Townhall Meeting to Support Clarence Aaron, Serving 3 Life Sentences for a First-Time, Non-Violent Drug Law Violation Featuring Bob ‘Cowboy’ Clark, Clarence’s attorney, along with community activist Sherman “Big Sho” Tate and poet HuggyBear DaPoet Loft, host of the weekly poetry series Get Yo’ Mind Right”. Erica Perkins, campaign manager for Kevin Powell’s 2008 U.S. Congressional run, will be the moderator. A video appeal will be produced from this event, asking President Obama to grant clemency to Clarence, who has already served 17 years in prison. For more info, contact Erica Perkins 251.545.2168 or [email protected]. Read more about Clarence Aaron at http://www.november.org/thewall/cases/aaron-c/aaron-c.html.
Data: 
Thu, 11/19/2009 - 6:00pm
Localização: 
700 Donald Street
Mobile, AL 36617
United States

A Few Pardons Today -- Meanwhile the Pardon Attorney's Web Site Hasn't Been Updated Since the Clinton Administration

In addition to the good news about the crack sentencing reductions being retroactive, another piece of modest good news is that Pres. Bush granted some clemencies, including a few drug offenders. Via the Associated Press and CNN:
  • Jackie Ray Clayborn, of Deer, Arkansas, sentenced in 1993 to five months in prison, two years of supervised release and $3,000 in fines on marijuana charges.
  • John Fornaby, of Boynton Beach, Florida, convicted in 1991 of conspiring to distribute cocaine. He served three years in prison.
  • Bush cut short the 1992 prison sentence of crack cocaine dealer Michael Dwayne Short of Hyattsville, Maryland, who will be released on February 8 after serving 15 years of his 19-year sentence.
Let's include this one too, just to keep things in the holiday spirit (even though we don't oppose having reasonable regulations on legalized substances):
  • William James Norman of Tallahassee, Florida, convicted in 1970 for possessing and running an unregistered distillery that did not carry the proper signage and illegally produced alcoholic drinks made from mash. He was sentenced to three years probation.
Clemencies are a good thing, so I feel bad about using a negative-sounding headline. But it's important, because these few additional actions still leave George W. Bush far behind other presidential administrations in use of the pardon powers, even behind the pardon-parsimonious George Herbert Walker Bush. Interestingly -- and perhaps not coincidentally -- the US Pardon Attorney's office has not updated the sections of their web site listing clemency recipients and statistics since the end of the Clinton administration. They don't even include George W. Bush in the list of presidents. (I've saved copies of those two pages to prove it, in case they finally get around to updating those pages.) More importantly, we've heard from list members whose family members have clemency petitions in that not only have their loved ones not been released, they haven't even heard back from the office with any decision, not even a "no." If I remember correctly, FAMM has charged that the backlog in the office is literally in the thousands. Come on George, I've said it before, and I'm saying it again -- WE WANT PARDONS!!!!
Localização: 
Washington, DC
United States

Pardon Whom?

Localização: 
United States
Publication/Source: 
The Nation (NY)
URL: 
http://www.thenation.com/doc/20070730/pollitt

FAMM urges broadening of commutation use

Judiciary Committee questions Libby commutation; FAMM urges broadening of commutation use On Wednesday, July 11 in Washington, D.C., the House Judiciary Committee will investigate President's Bush's show of mercy to White House insider Scooter Libby. The hearing will consider the use and misuse of Presidential clemency power for executive branch officials. Although Mr. Libby’s high-profile commutation merits discussion, Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM) has written to the committee urging it to also explore how commutations should be used to reduce excessive sentences of deserving, nonviolent federal prisoners. Click here http://www.famm.org/Repository/Files/Letter_to_Conyers%5B1%5D.pdf to read FAMM's letter. Many such prisoners have applied for and not received commutations, although they have served long portions of their sentences and their behavior in prison has been exemplary. It is especially troubling that many prisoners wait years to receive a decision and some petitions filed as far back as 2000 have not been acted upon. In 2001, President Clinton commuted the sentences of nearly two dozen nonviolent drug offenders, all of whom served significant portions of their lengthy mandatory sentences before their release. These individuals rejoined their communities and became productive citizens. Click here http://www.famm.org/oldsite/October/FAMMGRAMS/2001/Spring%202001%20commu... to read more about them. Julie Stewart, president and founder of FAMM, says, "President Bush should grant commutations to the deserving individuals who have sought them. By granting commutations, the President will show mercy, do justice, and prove that clemency is available to all deserving prisoners and not just to the well-connected.” Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM) is a national non-partisan nonprofit organization that promotes just sentencing policies. Many of FAMM's members are prisoners, children and families torn apart by unjustifiably harsh mandatory minimum penalties. Click here http://www.famm.org/ExploreSentencing/TheIssue/FacesofFAMM.aspx to read their stories.
Localização: 
Washington, DC
United States

Libby's Independence Day

Localização: 
United States
Publication/Source: 
San Francisco Chronicle
URL: 
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2007/07/03/EDG6QQ4TM41.DTL

President Bush's Commutation Total Just Increased by 50%!

Bush pardons turkeys and political allies but lets
half a million nonviolent drug offenders rot. The news just broke that President Bush has commuted Scooter Libby's sentence, leaving him with a conviction and a $250,000 fine. Most of the fine is going to be paid by his allies. This might not bother me as much -- I'm generally not a big fan of prison -- were it not that Bush has been such a "pardon Scrooge" during all of his now many years in office. In fact, as of last November the total number of commutations he had done numbered a mere two, according to SF Chronicle columnist Deb Saunders. What a coincidence that of all of the two million people languishing behind bars in this country, the vice president's former aide was one of only .00015% of them -- three people -- who deserved to be spared prison time! I've been watching drug policy, and criminal justice generally, for the last 14 years, and the sheer hypocrisy in this instance even blows me away. Either George Bush proceeds now to release nonviolent offenders in droves -- thousands and thousands of them -- or calling him a hypocrite will be the understatement of the millennium. Clarence Aaron and the Garrison twins would be three good people to start with. (Update: The president cannot commute state sentences, so change the .00015% I referred to earlier to .0015% instead. On the other side of the equation, though, a much higher percentage of federal incarcerations are of nonviolent drug offenses than of state incarcerations.)
Localização: 
Washington, DC
United States

Sentencing: Tyrone Brown is a Free Man!

Tyrone Brown, the Dallas man sentenced to life in prison in 1990 for smoking a joint while on probation for an armed robbery in which no one was injured, walked out of prison in Huntsville Thursday after receiving a conditional pardon from Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R). The pardon came after ABC News' 20-20 featured his story twice, helping to create a nationwide grass roots effort to win his freedom, Save Mr. Brown.

Brown was met by relatives and journalists, according to an Associated Press report filed from Huntsville. He broke into a broad smile as he embraced his mother, Nora Brown. "I didn't believe this day was going to come," he said.

Under the terms of the pardon, Brown will have to live with his mother, find a job, go to a therapist, and report to a parole officer. If he violates any of those conditions, the pardon could be revoked.

Brown was 17 when he was convicted of armed robbery. After he tested positive for marijuana once, Judge Keith Dean re-sentenced him to life in prison. The harshness of Judge Dean's sentence for Brown, which he has never explained, stands in sharp contrast to his treatment of well-connected, white John Alexander Wood. Wood was convicted of murder, but Dean sentenced him to probation, where he repeatedly tested positive for cocaine. But instead of sending him to prison, Dean gave him permission to quit reporting to his probation officer and quit taking drug tests.

With the glare of the national spotlight on the case, Judge Dean (by now ex-Judge Dean) joined a long list of local law enforcement officials calling on the governor to free Brown. Thanks to their efforts, as well as the efforts of muckraking media outlets and an aroused populace, one drug war prisoner has gone home. That leaves about 499,999 to go.

Gov. Perry Pardons Man's Life Sentence For Pot [Tyrone Brown]

Localização: 
Austin, TX
United States
Publication/Source: 
Dallas Morning News
URL: 
http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/latestnews/stories/031007dnmetpardon.35307679.html

Parole board recommends pardon for man serving life on drug bust

Localização: 
Dallas, TX
United States
Publication/Source: 
KGBT Television (TX)
URL: 
http://www.team4news.com/Global/story.asp?S=5966092&nav=0w0v

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