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Trump Issues 26 More Pardons

Former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort departs from U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., February 28, 2018. (Yuri Gripas/Reuters)

President Trump on Wednesday issued his second wave of pardons in two days, including clemency for his longtime friend Roger Stone, former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and Charles Kushner, father of Trump’s son-in-law, White House senior adviser Jared Kushner.

The president granted a total of 26 pardons Wednesday evening, adding to the 20 pardons and commutations he issued a day earlier.

Stone and Manafort were both indicted by former special counsel Robert Mueller. Manafort, who was convicted of bank and tax fraud, illegal foreign lobbying, and conspiracy to tamper with witnesses, is currently serving home confinement after spending two years in prison and being released in May due to the pandemic. The 2016 Trump campaign chief had five years of his prison sentence remaining.

In a controversial move, Trump commuted Stone’s 40-month prison sentence in July, days before he was scheduled to report to federal prison in Georgia. Stone was convicted of lying to Congress, witness tampering and obstructing the House’s investigation into the Trump campaign’s connections to Russia.

Kushner pled guilty to tax evasion, retaliating against a federal witness, his brother-in-law, and lying to the Federal Election Commission.

The president also granted a pardon to Margaret Hunter, the wife of former California congressman Duncan Hunter, who pled guilty last year to “knowingly and willingly” conspiring to misuse campaign funds. Trump had pardoned her husband a day earlier.

Trump also commuted the sentences of Mark Shapiro and Irving Stitsky, both serving 85-year prison sentences for defrauding more than 250 people out of $23 million in real estate scam.

On Tuesday, Trump announced 20 pardons and commutations, including for high-profile individuals convicted during the Mueller investigation.

Among those pardoned were George Papadopoulos, a foreign policy adviser to the 2016 Trump campaign who pled guilty to lying to the FBI during the Russia investigation, four Blackwater guards convicted of killing Iraqi civilians, and three former GOP congressmen, Hunter, Chris Collins of New York, and Steve Stockman of Texas.

Trump is expected to issue more pardons before leaving office in January.

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