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John Poindexter (born August 12, 1936) is a retired American naval officer and Department of Defense official.
He was Deputy National Security Adviser and National Security Adviser under the Reagan administration and was one of the major players in the Iran-Contra affair, for which he was convicted in April 1990 of multiple felonies. However, those convictions were later overturned on a technicality in a 2-1 decision. Essentially, the judges held that witnesses had been influenced by Poindexter's testimony before Congress and since he had been granted immunity for that testimony, the guilty verdict was overturned.
- Incidentally, both judges who voted to overturn were Reagan appointees while the dissenting judge was a Carter holdover. (Poindexter Wins Iran-Contra Case in Appeals Court, New York Times, November 16, 1991, by David Johnston)
- Note that Poindexter himself declared his congressional testimony to be true: "I stand by every word that I said and when I said the buck stopped with me with regard to the matters under discussion at the time, that was correct." (Poindexter Wins Iran-Contra Case in Appeals Court, NYT, November 16, 1991)