July 29, 2019 / 6:02 PM / 3 months ago

Trump issues full pardons for five convicted criminals

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump issued full pardons on Monday for five criminals who served sentences on charges including drug trafficking, weapons sales and illegal gambling, the White House said in a statement.

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a signing ceremony for the "Permanent Authorization of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act" in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, U.S., July 29, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

It cited the men’s acceptance of responsibility for their crimes and the community service or charitable work each has performed since their release.

The individuals were John Richard Bubala, Roy Wayne McKeever, Rodney Takumi, Michael Tedesco, and Chalmer Lee Williams. All were convicted of their crimes more than 20 years ago.

Bubala pleaded guilty to improper use of federal property for transferring auto equipment to the town of Milltown, Indiana. McKeever was convicted of using a telephone to distribute marijuana.

Takumi was arrested while working at an illegal gambling parlor. Tedesco was convicted for drug trafficking and fraud stemming from a drug crime. Williams, an airport baggage handler, was convicted of crimes related to theft of firearms from checked luggage.

“After a careful review of the files of each of these individuals, President Trump has concluded that each are entirely deserving of Executive Clemency,” the statement said.

The full pardon restores the men’s right to vote and the right to bear arms.

Trump also commuted the sentences of two people, including Ronen Nahmani, a non-violent first offender with five young children at home and a wife with terminal cancer, the White House said.

Nahmani had been convicted of possession of synthetic cannabinoids with intent to distribute. He was accused of operating a business importing the drugs form China and Hong Kong and selling them throughout the United States.

His release was supported by lawmakers from Democratic U.S. Representative Hakeem Jeffries to Republican congressman Mark Meadows, it said.

The other commutation involved Ted Suhl, an Arkansas man accused of participating in a bribery scheme to boost Medicaid payments to his company, which operated faith-based behavioral healthcare treatment centers for juveniles.

Reporting by Doina Chiacu; editing by David Alexander and Tom Brown

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