PHOENIX — Late Tuesday night, President Donald Trump issued a pardon to Rick Renzi, a former congressman who was convicted of corruption, and money laundering. Renzi served as the representative for CD1 from 2003 until 2009.
Renzi has been adamant over the years that corrupt government agents launched the “Eagle Operation” to frame him and remove him from office.
In April 2020, an official complaint was filed on behalf of Renzi, according to Thomas Glessner, president of the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates, with supporting documents showing prosecutorial misconduct and illegal activity. The complaint sought a full investigation by the Department of Justice.
Official statement from the White House:
President Trump granted a full pardon to Representative Rick Renzi of Arizona. Mr. Renzi’s pardon is supported by Representative Paul Gosar, Representative Tom Cole, former Representative Tom DeLay, former Representative Jack Kingston, former Representative Todd Tiahrt, former Representative John Doolittle, former Representative Duncan Hunter Sr., former Representative Richard Pombo, former Representative Charles Taylor, former Representative Dan Burton, Larry Weitzner, National Institute of Family and Life Advocates, and numerous other members of his community. In 2013, Mr. Renzi was convicted of extortion, bribery, insurance fraud, money laundering, and racketeering. He was sentenced to 2 years in Federal prison, 2 years of supervised release, and paid a $25,000 fine. Before his conviction, Mr. Renzi served three terms in the House of Representatives. His constituents considered him a strong advocate for better housing, quality education, and improved healthcare—especially for the underprivileged and Native Americans.
Renzi released the following statement upon learning of the pardon:
“After almost fourteen years of fighting for my innocence, it took a real man of action and courage in President Trump to finally relieve me of the horrific deceit of being wrongly convicted by a Department of Justice that engaged in witness tampering, illegal wiretapping, and gross prosecutorial misconduct.
“Because I refused to plead guilty to a crime I did not commit, a prosecutor even resorted to suborning perjury in order to secure a fraudulent conviction.
“I went to prison and was wrongfully incarcerated rather than cower and plead to the DOJ fabricated narrative that I was guilty.
“Today, President Trump has recognized the extent of the DOJ corruption in my case and for this, I will remain forever grateful.
“It is a fact, verified by court sanctions during a pretrial hearing, that the FBI knowingly and illegally recorded 41 attorney-client privileged phone calls and then deliberately lied to the court to cover up their corrupt actions.
“It is a fact, verified by court sanctions during a post-trial misconduct hearing, that the FBI offered money through a payoff scheme to manipulate the key witness in my case while this witness was going through bankruptcy. The prosecution then deliberately sponsored this lie to the jury and hid this scheme from my attorneys and the court.
“It is a fact, revealed during a post-trial misconduct hearing, that the lead FBI agent, who was later removed from my case, deliberately concealed and withheld exculpatory evidence which would have undermined their criminal case, information that would have revealed my innocence.
“And, it is a fact that the DOJ stole documents from my Congressional office only to have even Speaker Nancy Pelosi and then Minority Leader John Boehner file a motion for dismissal based upon the overwhelming amount of prosecutorial misconduct in my case.
“The factual findings, and three separate sanctions by the Court against the Department of Justice officials, clearly established that the government deliberately and with foreknowledge repeatedly engaged in corrupt and illegal acts during the investigation and prosecution of my case, proving irrefutably that my trial was fundamentally unfair, and that my convictions were fraudulently obtained and are without merit.
“My attorneys filed an official 190-page Inspector General complaint with the Department of Justice, which was quietly swept under the rug. Yet this complaint resurfaced and became the cornerstone of veracity and substance to justify this pardon.
“It took this President, a true leader of change and backbone to act on my behalf. Thank God for President Trump.”