A Review of the Pardon Attorney's Reconsideration of Clarence Aaron's Petition for Clemency
Date:  12-21-2012

Aaron sentenced to three life terms as first time offender who did not buy, sell or supply drugs
On November 5, 2012, Reentry Central, with permission from Pro Publica,posted an article concerning President Obama’s dismal record in granting pardons or clemency to hundreds of people who submitted applications to him for consideration.

The article stated that the White house “asked for a fresh review of the case of Clarence Aaron, who is serving a triple life-sentence, without parole, for his role in a drug conspiracy.” In May 2012, Pro Publica and the Washington published an article on the case of Aaron. click here to go to website

Aaron’s case has received national attention because his application for clemency was denied because crucial information that would support his application for clemency was withheld. Pro Pulica wrote, “Ronald Rodgers, the current pardon attorney, left out critical information in recommending that the White House deny Aaron's application. In a confidential note to a White House lawyer, Rodgers failed to accurately convey the views of the prosecutor and judge and did not disclose that they had advocated for Aaron's immediate commutation.”

On December 18 the U.S. Department of Justice issued the Office of the Inspector General’s review which “…concluded that the primary responsibility for the inaccuracies and ambiguity contained in the e-mail that was sent to the White House ultimately lies with Rodgers, the author and the person to whom the Department’s regulations and policies provide primary responsibility for preparing such materials. Nevertheless, we believe that the Office of the Deputy Attorney General shares some responsibility for this error because the Office of the Deputy Attorney General had ultimate responsibility and authority for making the recommendation to the White House on the clemency petition. We found that the Counsel should have done a better job of editing Rodgers’s proposed e-mail, and that the Deputy Attorney General or one of the officials to whom the Deputy Attorney General had delegated his authority with respect to the denial of pardon petitions should have reviewed the contents of the e-mail before it was sent.”

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