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Trump Commutes Prison Sentence for Former Iowa Agriprocessors CEO

22 December, 2017, 00:58 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • Celebrations in Chabad headquarters Wednesday evening

"The injustice of Mr. Rubashkin's grossly excessive 27-year sentence was readily apparent to any fair-minded individual who reviewed the facts of the case", read a statement from Agudath Israel of America. His prosecution came after federal authorities raided the plant and arrested 389 illegal immigrants in 2008.

Trump's commutation is not a pardon, meaning that Rubashkin's conviction is not vacated, and he still must make restitution payments and submit to post-release supervision.

Trump's decision to commute Rubashkin's sentence had bipartisan support, including from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California and Republican Sen.

Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin, 58, an American Chabad rabbi, used to be the CEO of a kosher slaughterhouse and meat-packing plant in Postville, Iowa, which he had grown into the largest kosher meat producer in the United States, until the plant was cited for animal mistreatment, food and environmental safety issues, child labor, and employing illegal aliens.

Rubashkin was convicted in a fraud case in 2009, and was sentenced to 27-years in prison. Nearly 400 people, including children, were discovered to have been working at the site. The immigration-related charges against Rubashkin were dropped after he was convicted of fraud. Immigration charges against Rubashkin were dismissed after federal prosecutors determined that a conviction on the charges would have no impact on his sentence.

"I am proud to be a part of a large, bipartisan group of members of Congress who, along with over a hundred former senior justice officials, have been calling for Mr. Rubashkin's release for the past eight years", Hatch tweeted.

Following his conviction, Rubaskin's case became a cause celebre for some former senior Justice Department officials and lawmakers.

Despite six amicus briefs joined by numerous legal heavyweights, the Supreme Court in 2012 denied a petition from Rubashkin to look into his case and sentencing. Rubashkin had tried for years to get a reduced sentence, but was repeatedly turned down by the courts. Outgoing New York City Council member David Greenfield, an Orthodox Jew who represents the neighborhood where Rubaskin's family lives, called the news a "Chanukah miracle" on Twitter.

"Mr. Rubashkin is a devoted husband and father, a deeply religious man who simply doesn't deserve a sentence of this length, or anything remotely close to it", they wrote in a letter that urged Trump to use his "executive clemency power to commute the patently unjust and draconian 27-year sentence imposed upon Sholom Rubashkin - a first time, non-violent offender and father of 10, including an acutely autistic child".


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