Politics

Trump Pardons Dinesh D’Souza

REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Saagar Enjeti White House Correspondent

President Donald Trump will issue a full pardon to conservative activist Dinesh D’Souza for his past charges of campaign finance violations.

“Mr. D’Souza was, in the President’s opinion, a victim of selective prosecution for violations of campaign finance laws.  Mr. D’Souza accepted responsibility for his actions, and also completed community service by teaching English to citizens and immigrants seeking citizenship,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement, adding “in light of these facts, the President has determined that Mr. D’Souza is fully worthy of this pardon.”

Trump also told reporters “I called him last night first time I’ve ever spoken to him I said I’m pardoning you. Nobody asked me to do it,” adding “what should have been a quick minor fine, like everybody else with the election stuff….what they did to him was horrible.”

D’Souza plead guilty in 2014 for making illegal campaign donations to Republican candidate Wendy Long. D’Souza allegedly arranged donations to Long via friends and acquaintances in the form of straw donations.

“At most, this was an act of misguided friendship,” D’Souza’s lawyer Benjamin Brafman told reporters at the time.

D’Souza knew Long from their time together at Dartmouth University and was trying to assist her campaign in any way possible, though he admitted doing so by straw donation.

D’Souza has long maintained that he was unfairly targeted by the Obama administration for his political activism against the former president. He was sentenced to eight months living under supervision in California and a $30,000 fine.