One of President Trump’s recent actions in office is to pardon a former Google engineer convicted of stealing trade secrets. Anthony Lewandowski worked in Google’s self-driving car division, now known as Waymo, before leaving to set up Otto, a self-driving trucking company acquired by Uber. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison in August, when Judge William Alsop described the incident as “the biggest trade secret crime I have ever seen”.
It was found that Lewandowski downloaded thousands of files to his laptop before leaving Google and entering into sales discussions. Uber eventually fired him after Google sued, and Lewandowski remained in a legal battle with the riding company, claiming it should be liable for the $ 179 million he was ordered to pay Google. In a separate lawsuit, Lewandowski claimed that Uber owed him a loss of billions of dollars from the auto deal.
Lewandowski never began his sentence, as Alsop allowed him to be detained indefinitely because of the COVID-19 epidemic. According to the White House announcement, Lewandowski’s pardon was supported by figures from the technology industry, including the controversial billionaire investor, Peter Thiel, the co-founder, Trey Stephens, the deputy director of Tale Capital, Blake Masters, the Hollywood agent Mayflitz, consultant Planet, And Oculus founder Andoril Palmer Loki.
Along with Lewandowski, Hanin Trump has 72 more people and reduced the prison sentences of another 70. The list includes rappers Lil Wayne, who pleaded guilty to possession of a weapon last year, and Kodak Black, who is currently in jail for weapons. Trump also pardoned Steve Bannon, a former boss of Breitbart News, who served as chief strategist for Trump until his difficult departure in 2017.
Fix: An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified a company founded in collaboration with Palmer Loki. It’s an endoril, not a planet. We are sorry for the mistake.