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White House grants clemency to twelve individuals serving unjust sentences for cannabis offenses

Three co-sponsored by Last Prisoner Project who will continue supporting those released in their reentry

WASHINGTONJan. 20, 2021 /PRNewswire/ —  The Last Prisoner Project, (LPP) a non-partisan, not-for-profit organization dedicated to cannabis criminal justice reform, is thrilled to see at least 10 individuals incarcerated on cannabis related offenses will be released from federal prison after receiving executive clemency grants early this morning. Many of these individuals were serving life sentences without the possibility of parole.

LPP, together with other criminal justice-reform organizations, has been working with the White House and the Office of the Pardon Attorney to advocate on behalf of several federal prisoners incarcerated for marijuana offenses. Mercifully,10 of those individuals — three of whose petitions LPP co-sponsored with the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) as part of their Trial Penalty Program — were granted commutations and will be released from federal prison.

Sarah Gersten, LPP’s Executive Director and General Counsel, said in a statement:

“We are so heartened that our efforts to secure federal clemency for these deserving individuals have finally come to fruition. The clemency power provides a critical opportunity to undo the all-too-frequent injustices in our criminal legal system. It is our sincere hope that today’s news will catalyze a systemic shift in the utilization of executive clemency power, and we look forward to working with the Biden Administration to bring relief to the estimated 40,000 individuals still suffering behind bars due to our country’s unjust and inequitable policy of cannabis criminalization. 

These pardons and commutations, especially when considered in light of the recent momentum behind legalization on the state level, are further evidence of the overwhelming bipartisan support for broad-based cannabis policy reforms. We are excited to work with the incoming administration to create a more formal process for expediting the consideration of similar cases — and look forward to the day when no one is punished for responsibly growing or consuming cannabis.”

The Last Prisoner Project is currently working to assist these recently-released individuals with their reentry needs. Follow this link to donate directly to our constituents and their families as they work to rebuild their lives.

ABOUT THE LAST PRISONER PROJECT
The Last Prisoner Project (LPP) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to cannabis-related criminal justice reform. As the United States moves away from the criminalization of cannabis, giving rise to a major new industry, there remains the fundamental injustice inflicted upon those who have suffered under America’s unjust policy of cannabis prohibition. Through intervention, advocacy and awareness campaigns, the Last Prisoner Project works to redress the past and continuing harms of these inhumane and ineffective laws and policies. Visit www.lastprisonerproject.org or text FREEDOM to 24365 to donate and learn more.

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