The rapper Jay-Z is pushing for the release of a 55-year-old man serving two decades for possession of marijuana. He has been behind bars since 1989, and now he’s asking for a pardon from President Trump.



Valon Vailes is being assisted by Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter, a music industry tycoon and a chief visionary officer of cannabis firm TPCO Holding Corp. doing business as The Parent Company.

According to Page Six, Jay-Z, who is renowned in the cannabis world for his premium marijuana brand Monogram, and his legal team have repeatedly pleaded with a North Carolina court for Vailes’ “compassionate release” after he was sentenced to 20 years in jail on cannabis-related crimes.

Attorney Alex Spiro urged the court to review their earlier motion, which was denied owing to Vailes’ COVID-19 immunization record, according to court papers acquired by Page Six.

“Mr. Vailes’ petition for compassionate release makes no reference of COVID-19 and relies on no COVID-19-related reasoning to argue for a lower sentence,” Spiro said.

Jay-Z Gets An Emotional Letter

Vailes was convicted in December 2007 of conspiring to possess with the purpose to distribute more than one ton of marijuana from 2003 to 2007. He received a 20-year federal prison term with a 10-year supervised release period.

Vailes’ situation came to the attention of Jay-Z and his legal team when the prisoner wrote to the rapper, stating, “This communication is a plea to beg for your assistance with the purpose to fight for my pardon.” 13 and a half years in prison for a drug that has become the ultimate green rush is a long time.”

Vailes said that he was moved by Jay-support Z’s for the “underprivileged and voiceless” while watching his career.

Vailes stated, “A lot has changed in my life, but most significantly, I have a fresh perspective of society.” “As a result, I promise my family, my children, and myself that my imprisonment will not be in vain.”

The Inequity

Vailes drew attention to the court system’s inequity.

Vailes said, “It is a sad truth that I am a casualty and a commodity of this system of injustice.”

Following the reading of the letter, Jay-Z reached out to Spiro and his Monogram team, asking them to submit a petition on Vailes’ behalf. The first motion for compassionate release was filed in August of this year.

“Mr. Vailes has exhausted his administrative remedies with the [Federal Bureau of Prisons]; extraordinary and compelling reasons warrant compassionate release in his case; the relevant factors support release, and Mr. Vailes is not a danger to the community,” Spiro argued in another filing on Wednesday.

More than 4,300 people have signed a petition calling for Vailes’ release.

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