President Donald Trump allegedly told the head of Customs and Border Protection he would grant him a pardon if he were sent to jail for violating immigration law, according to senior administration officials.
Trump reportedly made the comment during a visit to the border at Calexico, California, a week ago.
Two officials briefed on the exchanged say the president told Kevin McAleenan he would pardon him if he ever went to jail for denying entry to migrants.
McAleenan has since been named the acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.
It was not clear if the comment was a joke, according to CNN.
Trump denied in a tweet telling the Customs and Border Protection head he’d pardon him if he were sent to jail for violating immigration law.
Another Fake Story on @NBCNews that I offered Pardons to Homeland Securiy personnel in case they broke the law regarding illegal immigration and sanctuary cities. Of course this is not true. Mainstream Media is corrupt and getting worse, if that is possible, every day! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 13, 2019
A DHS spokesman told CNN: “At no time has the president indicated, asked or pressured the acting secretary to do anything illegal. Nor would the acting secretary take actions that are not in accordance with our responsibility to enforce the law.”