President Donald Trump is apparently taking actions needed to pardon a number of military service members who have been accused or convicted of war crimes.
The New York Times reports Trump has requested “the immediate preparation of paperwork” needed to pardon several American military members, including multiple cases that involve counts of murder and attempted murder.
The requests reportedly include requests for Navy SEALs Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, who will be standing trial in the coming weeks on charges of shooting unarmed civilians, and former Blackwater security contractor Nicholas Slatten, who was convicted of fatally shooting dozens of unarmed Iraqis in 2o07.
According to a senior military official, the White House sent requests on Friday to the Justice Department’s Office of the Pardon Attorney. The DOJ declined to comment on the matter.
Trump has wielded pardon power much differently than his predecessors, with many of his pardons going toward controversial and politically-charged cases involving his allies and supporters like former sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Earlier this week, Trump pardoned former newspaper publisher Conrad Black, a political commentator who frequently writes articles praising Trump’s actions in office and a whole book about Trump that has been described as a “hagiography.” Black was convicted of fraud in 2007.
The White House declined to comment to the Times.
[Photo by Chris Kleponis-Pool/Getty Images]
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]