The constitution of the United States allows the president to give pardons to convicts. Some of the pardons which have been given have been controversial. One of the recent cases is a pardon given by the current President- Donald Trump. In his first pardon as president, he pardoned notorious former Sheriff of Maricopa County Joe Arpaio. The move to pardon Arpaio was controversial since he is considered one of the worst violators of human right in modern America. Read more: Michael Lacey | LinkedIn and Michael Lacey | Twitter
Known as the toughest American Sheriff, he ruled with an iron fist. While serving as the country Sheriff, he oversaw mass torture of undocumented immigrants who had come into the country through the southern border of Mexico. One of the reasons he became infamous is after the arrest of two veteran journalist from Arizona known as Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey. These two are the founders of the village voice media and the Phoenix New Times.
In October 2007, the agents of this officer were knocking at the doors f the two journalists in the middle of the night with an intention of arresting them. The two were hauled like thieves into the trunks of separate cars and driven into concentration camps run by the Sheriff.
The reason they were being arrested was that they had revealed the content of a grand jury which had given Arpaio the powers to search the Phoenix New Times to search for evidence about a report they had done about Joe Arpaio.
Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey had played a significant role in exposing the actions of the rogue sheriff. They had used their media channels to castigate him for going against the human rights and allowing torture and even killings of the immigrants. The media channels run by the two journalists had focused attention on the law enforcement methods applied by Joe Arpaio and his officers.
One of the concentration camps he had established known as the tent city was popular for being a torture center for immigrants. The camp was infamous as one where sexual offenses against women would be allowed to happen with no action being taken on the officers. Immigrants were also put under inhumane conditions with lack of basic human needs supply.
The actions of Joe Arpaio were condemned day the courts in a ruling made in 211. The judge ruled that it was wrong for the Sheriff to detain immigrants for the reason he was doing so.
They were not justifiable reasons to put people in concentration camps and then torture them, some even to death. The judge ruled that the actions of torturing the immigrants be stopped with immediate effect. Joe Arpaio, however, would have none of this. He continued with his action.
In 2017, he was brought back to court and was found guilty of ignoring court orders. He was to be sentenced in October 2017, but the pardon by President Trump came much earlier. The courts approved the pardon by president Trump, and Joe Arpaio was set free. He is now free to mingle with whoever he wants with no risk of ever being taken back to the courts.
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