David Safavian served nearly a year in prison for lying about his interactions with lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
The series of pardons President Trump issued Tuesday included one for David Safavian, a top official at the General Services Administration and Office of Management and Budget during the George W. Bush administration. Safavian served time in federal prison for lying about his dealings with lobbyist Jack Abramoff in a high-profile scandal.
After a five-year federal investigation that spanned two trials and one successful appeal, Safavian was convicted in late 2008 on four counts relating to a golf trip he took with Abramoff in 2002. The former head of federal procurement policy at OMB was found guilty of obstructing a GSA investigation, lying on a financial disclosure form and two counts of making false statements.
While serving as GSA’s chief of staff, Safavian was invited by Abramoff to attend a golf excursion to Scotland and London. He sought the advice of GSA’s general counsel about the propriety of going on the trip, attesting that Abramoff “did not have business with GSA.”
But Abramoff had lobbied Safavian for help in purchasing or developing two GSA properties. One of them was the Old Post Office building in Washington, which later became the Trump International Hotel.
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