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Trump pardons Lil Wayne, Kodak Black in final actions as he leaves office


Just hours before US President Donald Trump leaves office, in one of his final flexes as the commander in chief, he has given clemency to 140 people including rappers Lil Wayne and Kodak Black.

The two were convicted in Florida on weapons possession charges.

Wayne, whose real name is Dwayne Michael Carter Jr, has frequently expressed support for President Trump and recently met with the Republican president on criminal justice issues.

The ‘6 Foot 7 Foot’ rapper faced up to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to a federal firearm charge last year.

Wayne was charged in 2019 with illegally carrying a loaded handgun while travelling from California to Florida.

“President Trump granted a full pardon to Dwayne Michael Carter Jr., also known as ‘Lil Wayne,’” the statement from White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany read.

“Mr Carter pled guilty to possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon, owing to a conviction over 10 years ago. Brett Berish of Sovereign Brands, who supports a pardon for Mr Carter, describes him as ‘trustworthy, kind-hearted and generous’”.

The statement further added: “Mr Carter has exhibited this generosity through commitment to a variety of charities, including donations to research hospitals and a host of foodbanks. Deion Sanders, who also wrote in support of this pardon, calls Mr Wayne ‘a provider for his family, a friend to many, a man of faith, a natural giver to the less fortunate, a way maker, and a game changer’”.

Last year, the 38-year-old performer revealed he had a “great meeting” with Trump, saying the two discussed the president’s proposed “Platinum Plan” to help the Black community.

Others on the list included Death Row Records co-founder Michael Harris and New York art dealer and collector Hillel Nahmad.

The Trump administration released the statement, which outlines pardons to 73 people and commutations of sentences to another 70, on Wednesday morning, just hours before the reality television star’s term as president comes to a dramatic end.

Bill K. Kapri aka Kodak Black is currently in prison on a 46-month sentence for falsifying federal forms to buy firearms. The Florida rapper’s criminal sexual conduct case is still pending.

Joe Biden is expected to be sworn in as president on Wednesday alongside Kamala Harris as Vice President, marking an end to Trump’s tumultuous four-year term.