US President Donald Trump has reportedly awarded a posthumous pardon to Zay Jeffries on October 10 who was a leading metal scientist. Jeffries was instrumental in the victory of the Allied forces in World War II. A White House Press Release announced that President Trump has issued an Executive Grant of Clemency (Full Pardon) to Zay Jeffries, who grew up in Fort Pierre, South Dakota. The scientist reportedly developed artillery shells which pierced German tanks and was also part of consultations on Manhattan Project to build atomic bomb which helped end the war in the Pacific theater. Trump's pardon comes after about 54 years since Jeffries' death in 1965. The case also attracted support from Senator Lindsey Graham, former Congressman Trey Gowdy, and others.
"President Donald J. Trump issued an Executive Grant of Clemency (Full Pardon) posthumously to Zay Jeffries for his conviction for engaging in anticompetitive conduct in violation of the Sherman Act," read the Official Press Release by White House.
Born in 1888, Jeffries reportedly was an American mining engineer, metallurgist, consulting engineer, and recipient of the 1946 John Fritz Medal. After his graduation in 1911 from Harvard, he had started as an assayer for the Custer Co. mining company in South Dakota. Later that year, he accepted an appointment as an instructor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. He also started as a consulting engineer in the Cleveland-area in 1914. Gradually in 1916, he was promoted to appointed assistant. Following this, he consulted metallurgy Laboratories at the University of Chicago and participated in the Manhattan Project. In 1939, he became an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences.
While working on Manhattan Project and artillery weapons, he was indicted on antitrust charges related to his employment in 1941. White House said in the Press release that though Jeffries was indicted, he proved vital to the war effort prompting Secretary of War Stimson to take the extraordinary step of requesting, with President Roosevelt’s approval, that the Attorney General defer any prosecution until after the war. It further read that when the Department of Justice returned to the case in 1947, it grounded its legal theory on a Supreme Court precedent that did not exist when Dr. Jeffries had initially been indicted. As per reports, the judge in the case was apologetic in handing down his sentence, which was a $2,500 fine with no jail time. In 1948, the same year as his conviction, President Truman awarded him with the Presidential Medal for Merit.
(With inputs from Associated Press)