WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – US President Barack Obama has commuted sentences of 22 prisoners convicted of drug dealing, the White House said in a statement.
"President Barack Obama granted commutations of sentence to… 22 individuals," the statement, issued on Tuesday, said.
Obama has now granted a total of 43 commutations throughout his presidency, according to the White House.
The President recognized inmates' potential to overcome the mistakes they made and return to normal life, Eggleston added.
The White House noted that the 22 individuals were convicted under an outdated sentencing regime.
"They served years — in some cases more than a decade — longer than individuals convicted today of the same crime," Eggleston said.
Drug distribution is a felony under US law with sentences ranging from 3 years to life in prison.
The number of commutations on drug-related crimes in the United States has increased in recent years. The former US President George W. Bush commuted 11 sentences in his eight years in office.