While pardons are rarely granted Mr. Petrus has had success in this area. There are no specific types of cases that Governor Cuomo will only pardon. Mr. Petrus’ experience and knowledge will help guide the client to make the best determination regarding whether and when to file. Mr. Petrus believes that this opens the door to taking a chance on a case that at first blush might be considered hard. Mr. Petrus will also file pardon applications in federal cases before the President.


A Commutation will allow a person who is serving a prison or jail sentence to be released early as ordered by the Governor of New York for State crimes or by the President for Federal crimes. To a more limited extent Federal court can effectively “commute” a sentence insofar as the judge can order medical release and similar orders.

From the Governor of New York’s website:

A commutation of sentence is a form of executive clemency that reduces an incarcerated person’s current sentence. The Governor may commute a sentence in any way that he considers appropriate. A sentence may be reduced to allow an incarcerated person to be released immediately or on a specific date.


Except for extraordinary circumstances, a commutation of sentence will be considered only if the incarcerated person meets the following eligibility criteria:

  • The incarcerated person’s minimum period of imprisonment is more than one year;
  • The incarcerated person has served at least one-half of his or her minimum prison term; and
  • The incarcerated person is not eligible for parole within one year of the date of his or her application for clemency.

Mr. Petrus believes in second chances. He understands that many, many Americans are serving sentences under both the federal and state systems that are too long, too harsh, and basically unfair. If you think your loved one should be released early from prison, call or message us, and Mr. Petrus would be happy to discuss all the options.


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