Trump Pardons Lil Wayne and Kodak Black

Image credit: LilTunechi/Twitter

Both rappers have been pardoned of their Federal charges And Kodak Black receives commutation.

Well to finish off what was a pretty strange and unpredictable four years of his presidency, Donald Trump on his last day of office pardoned rappers Lil Wayne and Kodak Black. The two rappers reprieve comes amid a flurry of pardons as some of the outgoing presidents final acts. Other high profile names on the list included the controversial Steve Bannon, former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, and Death Row Records co-founder Michael “Harry-O” Harris. 

Back in November, it was revealed that Lil Wayne faced a federal weapons charge relating to a December 2019 incident at Miami-Opa Locka Executive Airport. According to the Miami Herald, Miami-Dade Police tipped off federal authorities that a private plane transporting Lil Wayne from California to Florida was also carrying marijuana and weapons. The rapper was arrested and charged with possession of a firearm and ammunition by convicted felon. He pleaded guilty in December and was facing up to ten years in prison. 

The statement about Wayne’s pardon released by the White House notes the rappers commitment to charity and quotes support from Sovereign Brands’ Brett Berish (who calls him “trustworthy, kind-hearted, and generous”) and Deion Sanders (who praised him as a “provider for his family, a friend to many, a man of faith, a natural giver to the less fortunate, a waymaker and a game changer”). 

Kodak Black’s current sentence stems from a May 2019 arrest for indicating on paperwork that he was not under indictment while trying to purchase firearms. At the time, the rapper was out on bond for sexual assault charges in South Carolina. In March 2020, Kodak pleaded guilty to second degree criminal possession of a weapon following an April 2019 arrest at the border between the United States and Canada. His pardon came whilst he was serving time in prison. 

The official White House statement commutation noted the support of Gucci Mane, Lil Yachty, Lil Pump, Baltimore Ravens player Lamar Jackson and more. “Before his conviction and after reaching success as a recording artist, Kodak Black became deeply involved in numerous philanthropic efforts,” the statement reads. “In fact, he has committed to supporting a variety of charitable efforts, such as providing educational resources to students and families of fallen law enforcement officers and the underprivileged.”

In another strange turn of events Trump also commuted the sentence of Michael “Harry-O” Harris, co-founder of Death Row Records. Harris had served 30 years of a 25-to-life sentence for conspiracy to commit first degree murder. “He is a former entrepreneur and has mentored and taught fellow prisoners how to start and run businesses,” the White House’s statement reads. “He has completed courses towards business and journalism degrees.”

The end of Trump was just as his presidency, confusing, odd and totally unpredictable. Who would have thought Trump would be pardoning some of the countries most popular and controversial rappers in his final days? Certianly not me. 

Music journalist and photojournalist based in Cornwall.

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