President Obama issued the first pardons of the presidency late Friday.
Mr. Obama pardoned a total of nine people for offenses ranging from conspiracy to defraud the United States by making false statements to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to distribution of cocaine. Perhaps the most unusual charge was "mutilation of coins", for which Ronald Lee Foster of Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania was sentenced to one year of probation and $20 fine.
White House Spokesman Reid Cherlin explained the reasons behind Mr. Obama's decision to pardon these individuals among what is likely to have been a large list of applicants.
"The President was moved by the strength of the applicants' post-conviction efforts at atonement, as well as their superior citizenship and individual achievements in the years since their convictions," Cherlin told Fox.
Here is the complete list from the White House:
President Obama Grants Nine Pardons
Today President Barack Obama granted pardons to the following nine individuals:
· James Bernard Banks - Liberty, Utah
Offense: Illegal possession of government property; 18 U.S.C. § 641. Sentence: Oct. 31, 1972; District of Utah; two years of probation.
· Russell James Dixon - Clayton, Ga.
Offense: Felony liquor law violation; 26 U.S.C. § 5604(a)(1). Sentence: June 23, 1960; Northern District of Georgia; two years of probation.
· Laurens Dorsey - Syracuse, N.Y.
Offense: Conspiracy to defraud the United States by making false statements to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration; 18 U.S.C. §§ 371, 1001.Sentence: Aug. 31, 1998; District of New Jersey; five years of probation and $71,000 restitution.
· Ronald Lee Foster - Beaver Falls, Penn.
Offense: Mutilation of coins; 18 U.S.C. § 331. Sentence: Oct. 4, 1963; Eastern District of North Carolina; one year of probation and $20 fine.
· Timothy James Gallagher - Navasota, Texas
Offense: Conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute cocaine; 21 U.S.C. § 846. Sentence: Oct. 18, 1982; District of Arizona; three years of probation.
· Roxane Kay Hettinger - Powder Springs, Ga.
Offense: Conspiracy to distribute cocaine; 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(a)(1) and 846. Sentence: March 31, 1986; Northern District of Iowa; 30 days in jail followed by three years of probation.
· Edgar Leopold Kranz Jr. - Minot, N.D.
Offense: Wrongful use of cocaine, adultery and writing three insufficient fund checks; Articles 112a and 134, Uniform Code of Military Justice. Sentence: Sept. 14, 1994, as approved Nov. 4, 1994; General court-martial convened at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii; bad conduct discharge (suspended), 24 months of confinement and reduction to pay grade E-1.
· Floretta Leavy - Rockford, Ill.
Offense: Distribution of cocaine, conspiracy to distribute cocaine, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, and possession of cocaine with intent to distribute; 21 U.S. C. §§ 841(a)(1), (a)(2) and 846, 18 U.S.C. § 2.Sentence: Oct. 19, 1984; District of Kansas; one year and one day in prison and three years of special parole.
· Scoey Lathaniel Morris - Crosby, Texas
Offense: Passing counterfeit obligations or securities; 18 U.S.C. §§ 472 and 2. Sentence: May 21, 1999; Western District of Texas; three years of probation and $1,200 restitution, jointly and severally.