Trump confidants push for Michael Milken pardon, report says
Those close to President Donald Trump are reportedly pushing the idea of pardoning Michael Milken, the junk-bond king who personified the 1980s buy-and-destroy era.
Bloomberg News reports that support for pardoning Milken is coming from Trump confidants including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, former White House spokesman Anthony Scaramucci, son-in-law Jared Kushner and attorney Rudy Giuliani, who prosecuted Milken when he was U.S. attorney in the late 1980s.
Milken led the wave of buyouts of cash-rich corporations financed by so-called junk bonds at Drexel Burnham Lambert. He pleaded guilty to six charges of fraud and conspiracy, after being indicted on 98 charges, and served 22 months in prison. Milken inspired Michael Douglas’s character in the film “Wall Street.”
Milken, who is barred from the securities industry, has spent the latter part of his life involved in philanthropic endeavors, notably the fight against cancer. A message left with the Milken Institute wasn’t returned.
The judge in the Milken case, District Court Judge Kimba Wood, is now reviewing evidence in the government’s suit against Michael Cohen, Trump’s former attorney.
Steve Goldstein is MarketWatch's Washington bureau chief. Follow him on Twitter @MKTWgoldstein.
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