Posted on | November 1, 2009 | 2 Comments
A federal grand jury was investigating whether a Treasury employee was leaking government secrets. George Burdick was an editor at the New York Tribune. The Grand Jury wanted to know who leaked the secrets. Burdick assert the 5th and told the grand jury that he wouldn’t speak to them.
Wilson gave him a full pardon so as to give Burdick a free pass at ever being prosecuted for anything he said to grand jury. Burdick refused to accept it. He was jailed and fined.
The noteworthiness of this excerpt is that the case established the idea that one must accept the pardon, and the acceptance is an acknowledgment of the underlying crime. If the acceptance never occurs, the pardon never occurs, thereby voiding the pardon.
But see, Clinton’s pardon of Flipper, rejecting Burdick.