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Does Mark Wahlberg Only Want a Pardon so He Can Continue to Build a Burger Empire?

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The actor is seeking an official pardon for a race-related crime he committed in 1988.

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Actor Mark Wahlberg allegedly wants an official pardon for his past crimes so nothing can stop his family from building a burger empire. According to the Associated Press, Wahlberg — who owns the growing burger chain Wahlburgers with his siblings — has filed an application with the Massachusetts Board of Pardons to have his record purged of his 1988 racially charged assault of two Vietnamese men. The actor, who was 16 at the time, served 45 days in jail for his crime. Currently, his pardons case is pending a hearing in front of the state parole board.

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The Hollywood Reporter alleges the real reason Wahlburg is seeking a pardon at this time — 26 years after the crime — is because he doesn't want to be "denied a concessionaire's license on the basis of my prior record." The Wahlberg clan announced earlier this month that it has plans to open 27 Wahlburgers locations in states like Florida and New York in the next several years. Eventually the family — who star in an A&E reality show also called Wahlburgers — wants to open 300 outposts nationwide.

Vulture notes that one of Wahlberg's victims recently publicly forgave the actor for his crimes, which could help his pardons case. However, according to the AP, Massachusetts has not approved a pardon since 2002.

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