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Trump Pardons Patriot and Former Sheriff Joe Arpaio

Three weeks ago we reported about the conviction of Joe Arpaio. Now President Donald Trump pardoned Joe Arpaio on Friday, saving the controversial former Arizona sheriff from going to prison after he was convicted of criminal contempt linked to his hard-line tactics moving after undocumented immigrants.

The movement drew outcry from civil rights groups, which accuse Arpaio of violating the Constitution in his crackdown on illegal immigration.
During last year’s presidential campaign, Arpaio was a vocal proponent of Trump’s candidacy and used his national notoriety to urge Trump’s similarly aggressive stance on border security and deportations.

In a brief statement released late Friday evening, the White House praised Arpaio’s career.

“During his time as sheriff, Arpaio continued his life’s work of protecting the general public from the scourges of crime and illegal immigration,” the announcement read. “Sheriff Joe Arpaio is now 85 years old, and after over 50 years of admirable service to our state, he’s (a) worthy candidate for a Presidential pardon.”

Arpaio thanked Trump on Twitter.

Arpaio continued: “I’m humbled and exceptionally grateful to President Trump. I look fwd to placing this chapter supporting me and helping to #MAGA”

He said in a Fox News interview Friday that he would hold a news conference early next week to talk about the pardon. Trump didn’t consult Justice Department
The pardon is the first of Trump’s presidency, though he didn’t follow his predecessors’ practice of consulting with attorneys at the Justice Department before announcing his decision.

FILE – In this Feb. 4, 2009, file photo, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, left, orders approximately 200 convicted illegal immigrants handcuffed together and moved into a separate area of Tent City, for incarceration until their sentences are served and they are deported to their home countries, in Phoenix. Lawyers are scheduled to make closing arguments Thursday, July 6, 2017, at the criminal trial of the former six-term sheriff of metro Phoenix. Arpaio is charged with misdemeanor contempt-of-court for defying a judge’s order to stop his traffic patrols that targeted immigrants. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

“This is the President’s pardon,” a source with knowledge of the decision said. Under the Constitution, Trump is allowed wide leeway in issuing pardons. There are no prerequisites for consultation within the government before a decision is announced.

“The President exercised his legal authority and we respect his decision,” said Ian Prior, a Justice Department spokesman. Trump hinted in his decision earlier this week through a raucous campaign rally in Phoenix. “So was Sheriff Joe was convicted for doing his job?” Trump queried his assistants. “I will make a prediction. I believe he is going to be just fine, OK.”

Trump tweeted Friday night about his decision:

Arpaio, who had been sheriff in Maricopa County, Arizona, until this past year, was found guilty of criminal contempt last month for ignoring a court order in a racial-profiling case. His sentencing was scheduled for October 5.

“Not only did (Arpaio) abdicate responsibility, he declared to the world as well as his subordinates that he was going to continue business as usual regardless of who said differently,” US District Judge Susan Bolton wrote in a July 31 order finding him guilty.

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