US President Donald Trump has issued pardons and sentence commutations for 29 people, including former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and Charles Kushner, the father of his son-in-law.
The actions mean Mr Trump has granted clemency to nearly 50 people in the last two days by pardoning them or by commuting their sentences.
The pardons of Mr Manafort and Roger Stone, who months earlier had his sentence commuted by Mr Trump, underscore the president’s determination to use the power of his office he final weeks to unravel the results of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation and to come to the aid of associates he feels were wrongly pursued.
Mr. President, my family & I humbly thank you for the Presidential Pardon you bestowed on me. Words cannot fully convey how grateful we are.
— Paul Manafort (@PaulManafort) December 24, 2020
Mr Trump has now pardoned four people convicted in that investigation, including former national security adviser Michael Flynn and campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI.
Mr Manafort had been sentenced to more than seven years in prison for financial crimes related to his work in Ukraine and was among the first people charged as part of Mr Mueller’s investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.
He was released to home confinement last May because of coronavirus concerns in the federal prison system.
Mr Manafort, in a tweet, thanked Mr Trump and lavished praise on the outgoing president, declaring that history would show he had accomplished more than any of his predecessors.
Mr Kushner is the father of Mr Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and a wealthy real estate executive who pleaded guilty years ago to tax evasion and making illegal campaign donations.