Breaking a logjam of hundreds of pent-up clemency requests, President Bush yesterday granted pardons to 14 people and shortened the prison terms of two others.
The majority of the felons who won leniency from Bush yesterday are far from household names.
Andrew F. Harley of Falls Church was pardoned for wrongful use and distribution of marijuana and cocaine after a court-martial by the Air Force Academy in 1985 caused him to forfeit his pay and prompted his dismissal from the service. Leslie O. Collier of Charleston, Mo., had been convicted of unauthorized use of a registered pesticide. Obie G. Helton of Rossville, Ga., was pardoned after conviction on charges of acquiring food stamps without proper permission and sentenced to two years' probation in 1983.
Several other offenders who won leniency yesterday were convicted of run-of-the-mill white-collar crimes such as bank embezzlement, tax evasion or accounting violations. Pardons give their recipients greater leeway to find jobs, live in public housing and vote, among other privileges.