Connect with us


‘Not Expressed Remorse’: Steve Bannon Sentenced to Four Months in Prison by Federal Judge for Contempt of Congress



Former top Trump White House advisor turned far-right wing extremist Steve Bannon has been sentenced to four months in prison by a federal judge, for contempt of Congress. The former executive chairman of Breitbart News and former board member of the infamous data-analytics firm Cambridge Analytica refused to comply with a valid and legal subpoena from the U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack.

“Others must be deterred from committing similar crimes,” U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols, a Trump appointee who clerked with Justice Clarence Thomas, said as he passed down the sentence. He also imposed a fine of $6500. The four month sentence is actually two, but to be served concurrently.

The sentence will be delayed to allow Bannon time to appeal, meaning he was not taken into custody and does not have to go to jail immediately. If he chooses to not appeal he is to report to prison on November 15.

Nichols had told the court as he began sentencing, “Mr. Bannon has not provided a single document,” and “has not provided any testimony on any topic.”

“Mr Bannon was a private citizen,” Judge Nichols continued. “Some of the information sought by the subpoena is information under which no conceivable claim of executive privilege could’ve been made.”

“The January 6th committee has every right to investigate what happened that day,” Nichols told Bannon and his attorneys, adding, and “what can be done to prevent similar .. events from happening in the future.”

Prosecutors had asked Judge Nichols to give Bannon the maximum sentence allowed, which would be six months in prison and a fine of $200,000.

Judge Nichols appeared to chastise the U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack for not suing Bannon to enforce their subpoena.

CBS News’ Scott Macfarlane was at the D.C. federal courthouse and posted this photo of Bannon.

Walking into he courthouse Bannon decreed the Biden administration “illegitimate,” and said it will end on November 8.

“The governemnt further argues that Mr. Bannon has not expressed remorse and has attacked the select committee at every turn. On this point I agree with the government,” Judge Nichols said, according to NBC News’ Daniel Barnes. “He has expressed no remorse for his actions.”

READ MORE: ‘Crime-Fraud Exception’: Judge Orders Coup Memo Author Eastman to Hand Over More Emails to J6 Committee

Bannon’s attorney backed up his client’s behavior.

“Quite frankly, Mr. Bannon should make no apology. No American should make an apology for the way Mr. Bannon proceeded in this case,” David Schoen told the court, even after Judge Nichols noted Bannon’s attacks on the U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack.

Bannon’s attorneys had asked for probation, which DOJ adamantly, in court documents, contested.

“In my view the statute sets out a mandatory minimum of one month and a mandatory maximum of 12 months,” Judge Nichols said.

J.P. Cooney, a prosecutor from the U.S. Attorney’s office, defended the request for fining Bannon $200,000 because “that is exactly what the defendant has asked for.”

Barnes reports that “Bannon refused to comply with the probation office’s financial investigation, Cooney says.”

Bannon reportedly also told the prosecutor’s office, “I am willing and able to pay any fine levied against me.”

Prosecutors, arguing for the six month sentence, told Judge Nichols, “This man, the defendant, a man of means, a public figure … chose, hiding behind the fabricated claim of executive privilege and advice of counsel, to thumb his nose” at Congress, according to Politico’s Kyle Cheney.

READ MORE: ‘Under Oath’: Select Committee Votes to Subpoena Trump ‘To Protect Our Republic’ (Video)

Bannon had claimed he was exempt from honoring the subpoena from the U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack, citing executive privilege, which, as the country later learned, Donald Trump had not invoked in Bannon’s case – not that he would have been able to, as only the sitting U.S. President has that authority.

“DOJ says that if Bannon were genuinely concerned about executive privilege, then he would’ve complied with the Jan. 6 committee subpoena as soon as Trump purported to ‘waive’ it over the summer,” Cheney reports. “But that’s not what he did, DOJ says.”

Bannon’s attorney David Schoen repeatedly delivered caustic attacks about the House Select Committee.

CBS News’ Scott Macfarlane noted that Schoen “is quoting the Federalist Papers (James Madison) about separation of powers… talking about ‘tyranny,'” but added: “Bannon had a hard copy of the Financial Times under his arm as he walked toward courtroom (let’s see if that’s something he wants to show off to cameras as he departs).”

He also was caught “quoting Montesquieu,” and repeatedly accused the January 6 Committee of having a “partisan political agenda.”

Schoen repeatedly told Judge Nichols that Bannon was merely acting on his conscience and understanding of the Constitution, and “acting on principle.” Legal experts say that is not a legitimate defense.

Donald Trump pardoned Bannon from federal charges involving conspiracy to commit mail fraud and money laundering surrounding his We Build the Wall fundraising campaign, but he is now facing similar state charges.

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. 

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.


House Votes to Boot George Santos 311-114



Representative George Santos (R-NY) has been expelled from Congress following a 311-114 vote; two House members voted “present.”

The expulsion of Santos follows a debate on his fate on Thursday. The vote required a two-thirds majority, or 290 of the 435-seat chamber. This is Santos’ third vote of expulsion; last month, a vote failed with 31 Democrats voting against, according to The Hill.

While the vote was decisive, some notable Republicans voted to save Santos, including House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) and House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-MN).

“We’ve not whipped the vote and we wouldn’t,” Johnson told CNN Wednesday. “I trust that people will make that decision thoughtfully and in good faith. I personally have real reservations about doing this, I’m concerned about a precedent that may be set for that.”

READ MORE: ‘If I Leave They Win’: Santos Claims ‘Bullying’ at Off the Rails Press Conference

Santos himself had harsh words for the House following the vote. Leaving the capitol building, he briefly spoke with reporters.

“The House spoke that’s their vote. They just set new dangerous precedent for themselves,” he told CNN. “Why would I want to stay here? To hell with this place.”

He then cut his time short, telling reporters, “You know what? As unofficially no longer a member of Congress, I no longer have to answer your questions.”

Santos also faces 23 federal charges, which include fraud, money laundering and misuse of campaign funds, according to CNN. He has pleaded not guilty. An Ethics Committee report found evidence that Santos used campaign funds for Botox and even an OnlyFans account.

On Thursday, Santos said he refused to resign because otherwise, “they win.”

“If I leave the bullies take place. This is bullying,” Santos said. “The reality of it is it’s all theater, theater for the cameras and theater for the microphones. Theater for the American people at the expense of the American people because no real work’s getting done.”

Santos also threatened to file a resolution to expel Representative Jamaal Bowman (D-NY). Bowman pulled a fire alarm in September. Bowman pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor charge, and said it was an accident. He said he thought the fire alarm would open a locked door as he rushed to a vote. Bowman paid a $1,000 fine.

There have only been six total expulsions from the House, including Santos. Santos is the only Republican to ever be expelled from the House.

The previous expulsion was in 2002, when Representative James Traficant (D-OH) was expelled after a 420-1 vote. Traficant had been convicted on 10 counts of corruption-related crimes.

Before Traficant, Representative Michael “Ozzie” Myers (D-PA) was the first representative of the modern era to be expelled. Myers got the boot following his conviction for accepting bribes. Myers couldn’t keep out of trouble; in 2022, he was convicted and sentenced to 30 months in prison on charges of election fraud.

Prior to Myers, the only expulsions from the House were in 1861, at the start of the Civil War. Henry Cornelius Burnett (D-KY), John William Reid (D-MO) and John Bullock Clark (Whig-MO) were all expelled for joining the Confederacy.

Continue Reading


Peter Navarro, Former Top Trump White House Advisor, Guilty of Criminal Contempt



Peter Navarro, the controversial economist and former top Trump White House advisor, was found guilty by a jury on two counts of criminal contempt of Congress Thursday afternoon after a short trial that began on Tuesday.

Navarro refused to comply with a congressional subpoena issued by the U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack.

Legal experts had predicted a “quick conviction” after Navarro, called a “conspiracy theorist” who promotes “fringe” economic theories, had called no witnesses. The jury deliberated for under five hours. He faces up to two years in prison.

“The defendant chose allegiance to former President Trump over compliance with a subpoena,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth Aloi told the jury Thursday, as Politico reported. “The defendant chose defiance.”

“Our government only works when people play by the rules and it only works when people are held accountable when they do not,” Aloi also said, during closing arguments. “When a person intentionally and deliberately chooses to defy a congressional subpoena, that is a crime.”

READ MORE: Fani Willis Slams Jim Jordan’s ‘Illegal Intrusion’ in Scathing Rebuke: ‘You Lack a Basic Understanding of the Law’

Politico reported earlier that “ Navarro has long claimed that Trump told him to defy the committee’s Feb. 9, 2022 subpoena and assert executive privilege, a demand he said conferred immunity from having to cooperate with Congress’ investigation.”

“There’s no mistake, no accident,” prosecutor John Crabb told jurors, NBC News adds.

“That man thinks he’s above the law,” Crabb said. “In this country, nobody is above the law.”

READ MORE: ‘How Much the Former President Should Pay Her’: Judge Hands Trump Big Loss in E. Jean Carroll Case

Continue Reading


‘Look for a Quick Conviction Here’: Navarro Jury Could Reach a Verdict ‘Early This Afternoon’



Peter Navarro‘s criminal contempt of Congress trial is moving quickly and the jury may come to a verdict as early as this afternoon, court watchers say.

Navarro, who has been called a “conspiracy theorist” who holds “fringe” and “oddball” economic views, is a former top Trump White House aide. He advanced “Big Lie” election fraud claims and refused to comply with a February, 2022 subpoena issued by the U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack. He was criminally indicted in June of 2022 by a federal grand jury.

The trial began Tuesday in D.C. federal court.

Just before 11 AM Thursday the case was handed to the jury, Politico’s Kyle Cheney reports.

READ MORE: ‘Going to Go Very Badly’: Marjorie Taylor Greene ‘Demanding’ Biden Impeachment Inquiry, GOP Strategist Warns Against

“Given the brevity of the case, a verdict is highly likely in the next few hours,” Cheney adds, noting: “If convicted, he faces up to one year on each of two counts — one for refusing to testify, one for refusing to provide docs.”

“Navarro has long claimed that Trump told him to defy the committee’s Feb. 9, 2022 subpoena and assert executive privilege, a demand he said conferred immunity from having to cooperate with Congress’ investigation,” Politico reports. “For months, U.S. District Court Judge Amit Mehta wrestled with intricate questions about how executive privilege might apply to a former adviser to a former president, whether Navarro’s belief that Trump had invoked the privilege constituted a defense to the charges and how the Justice Department’s decision to charge him compares with its longstanding views of immunity for some senior executive branch officials from compelled congressional testimony.”

Wednesday evening, former top DOJ official Harry Litman noted, “Peter Navarro evidence already done, closing arguments tomorrow. Basically, it’s an incredibly simple case — he knew he had to comply with the subpoena, and he still thumbed his nose at it.”

Adding the the government called three witness but “Navarro called nobody,” Litman predicted: “Look for a quick conviction here.”

Continue Reading


Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.