The Finnish president for the first time in several decades did not have mercy on prisoners

For the first time in many years, Finnish President Sauli Niinistö did not pardon a single convict during the calendar year, the Helsingin Sanomat newspaper reported on Monday.
Monday is the last working day in Finland before the long Christmas weekend celebrated by both Catholics and Orthodox of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, including the Finnish Orthodox Church.
“President Sauli Niinistö rejected all petitions to pardon criminals this year. For the first time in several decades, the head of state didn’t amnesty during the calendar year. 50 petitioners received negative decisions, ”the publication notes.
The Supreme Court also denied a single pardon this year. When making his decision, the president takes into account the verdict of the Supreme Court. The President emphasizes that he does not review the crime itself or the validity of the punishment.
“I exercise the right to amnesty in situations when either significant changes occur in the life of a convicted citizen or his family,” Niinisto told the newspaper.
During the previous years, Niinistö pardoned from one to five people every year, however, even during the presidential campaign, he announced that he would be tougher on amnesty than his predecessors, because he considers this mechanism a relic of the past.
According to the publication, most of all the amnesty mechanism was used by President Mauno Koivisto (President of Finland 1982-1994), when almost every year he pardoned 50 people or more.