Is a pardon and amnesty issued by another country valid in the USA?

On 12/18/81, the Italian president issued a decree providing amnesty and pardon for certain crimes. I received a letter in 1982 stating that I was covered by this decree.

Asked on January 2, 2011 under Criminal Law, South Dakota


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Another country can pardon you (or issue an amnesty) for crimes you were charged with, convicted of, or potentially liable for under THAT country's laws. However, another country cannot absolve you in any way under U.S. law--that's not their decision to make. So, for example, if you are pardoned of Italian crimes, you don't need to worry about being arrested in the U.S. for a violation of Italian law (and extradited, etc.), but on the other hand, if you also violated U.S. law, you could be arrested, convicted, imprisoned, etc. for your United States legal violations. So how much the amnesty and padon will help you depends on whether you also violated other nations' laws.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.