Pop Culture with Tatiana

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Donald Trump grants clemency to rappers Lil Wayne and Kodak Black

President Trump granted clemency to 143 people on his last day in office. The list includes Hip Hop stars Lil Wayne and Kodak Black. Wayne was due to be sentenced on January 28 after he had pleaded guilty back in December 2020 to a federal firearms charge. He was looking at a maximum of 10 years in prison. On the other hand, rapper Kodak Black had already been serving a 4 year prison sentence for illegal possession of a firearm since March 2020. Black was not granted a full pardon but his sentence was commuted.

Back in December 2019, Lil Wayne (real name Dwayne Michael Carter Jr.) was arrested upon landing in Florida after police found a loaded handgun, in addition to cocaine, ecstasy, marijuana, heroin, pain killers and prescription-strength cough syrup (for his singing probably LOL), along with nearly $26,000 in cash. He was not charged for any drug offences but as a convicted felon himself (stemming from another gun charge back in 2007), he is barred from possessing a firearm.

A year later he pleaded guilty to a federal firearms charge and he was looking at a maximum sentence of 10 years. This somewhat explains why Lil Wayne seemed to randomly publicly endorse President Trump back in October of 2020, an action for which he was heavily criticised.

Wayne’s conviction was overturned on January 19, which is equal to a full acquittal. On the other hand, Kodak Black’s sentence was commuted, which means reduced, so his underlying criminal conviction remains.

Kodak Black, (real name Bill Kahan Kapri), was already serving a 46 month prison sentence for falsifying information on federal forms to buy firearms in Miami on two separate occasions. He was charged after being detained at the Canadian-American border with a Glock. The rapper has had a long history of criminal charges, including carjacking and rape, which is why his sentence was so harsh, and his plea last month for early release was denied. Also, while incarcerated he was involved in a fight that injured a prison guard.

On January 19, his sentenced was commuted by President Trump and Revolt TV reports that he will now be released from jail.

ccccccInvision/AP/Jordan Strauss

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