Gov. Brown grants 72 pardons, commutes sentences

FILE - In this Jan. 10, 2017, file photo, California Gov. Jerry Brown discusses his 2017-2018 state budget plan he released at a news conference in Sacramento, Calif. Brown is coming off a blockbuster year of liberal wins on climate change, minimum wage, gun control and two of his pet projects, sentencing reform and high-speed rail. But he delivers his State of the State address Tuesday, Jan. 24 in a time of uncertainty for California and to a Legislature that's in a defensive posture after the election of President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

SACRAMENTO (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown has pardoned 72 ex-convicts, continuing his tradition of timing his decisions around major Christian holidays including Easter.

Brown, a former Jesuit seminarian, limited his Saturday pardons to people who have already completed their sentences.

Such pardons don’t erase the convictions, but law enforcement agencies are informed and pardons become public records.

Brown also issued seven commutations.

California’s longest-serving governor has now issued 1,330 pardons, including 404 during his first two terms as governor.

Pardons were rare for his three immediate predecessors.

Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger gave out 15, Democrat Gray Davis granted none, and Republican Pete Wilson granted 13.

Brown’s office says earlier Republican governors were more generous, with Ronald Reagan granting nearly 600 and George Deukmejian more than 300.

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