Legal Information

U.S. urges 6-month sentence for ex-Trump adviser Bannon over contempt conviction

WASHINGTON, Oct 17 (Reuters) – The U.S. Justice Division on Monday requested a federal decide to condemn former President Donald Trump’s adviser Steve Bannon to 6 months behind bars, saying he pursued a “dangerous religion technique of defiance and contempt” towards the congressional committee probing the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the Capitol.

Bannon, 68, an influential far-right political determine, was convicted in July on two counts of contempt of Congress for defying a subpoena.

Every rely is punishable by between 30 days to at least one 12 months in jail and a high quality ranging between $100 to $100,000.

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He is because of be sentenced earlier than U.S. District Choose Carl Nichols on Friday morning.

Prosecutors instructed Nichols of their sentencing advice on Monday that Bannon’s actions, together with his refusal to today to provide “a single doc” to the congressional committee, led them to advocate a jail sentence on the high of the U.S. tips vary.

Additionally they urged the decide to impose the utmost high quality of $200,000, which they stated they based mostly on Bannon’s “insistence on paying the utmost high quality relatively than cooperate with the Probation Workplace’s routine pre-sentencing monetary investigation.”

“All through the pendency of this case, the defendant has exploited his notoriety — by means of courthouse press conferences and his Struggle Room podcast — to show to the general public the supply of his bad-faith refusal to adjust to the committee’s subpoena: a complete disregard for presidency processes and the regulation,” prosecutors wrote of their submitting.

“The defendant’s statements show that his contempt was not aimed toward defending government privilege or the Structure, relatively it was aimed toward undermining the committee’s efforts to analyze an historic assault on authorities.”

Bannon’s attorneys filed a sentencing memo on Monday saying their shopper needs to be sentenced to probation solely. If the decide insists on incarceration, then Bannon needs to be permitted to serve his sentence at residence, and never in jail, they stated.

Former U.S. President Donald Trump’s White Home chief strategist Steve Bannon attends his arraignment on the New York Legal Courthouse in New York, U.S., September 8, 2022. Steven Hirsch/Pool by way of REUTERS

Of their memo, they argued that Bannon was convicted on statutes ruled by “outdated” caselaw, and that he relied on his lawyer’s authorized recommendation by not showing earlier than the committee.

“The information of this case present that Mr. Bannon’s conduct was based mostly on his good-faith reliance on his lawyer’s recommendation,” they wrote.

Through the trial, Nichols restricted the scope of Bannon’s protection.

He was barred from arguing that he believed his communications with Trump have been topic to a authorized doctrine referred to as government privilege that may preserve sure presidential communications confidential. He was additionally prohibited from arguing he relied upon an lawyer’s authorized recommendation in refusing to conform.

Bannon was a key adviser to the Republican Trump’s 2016 presidential marketing campaign, then served as his chief White Home strategist throughout 2017 earlier than a falling out between them that was later patched up.

Whereas he was awaiting sentencing for his contempt of Congress conviction, he was individually indicted by a New York state grand jury on cash laundering and conspiracy prices for allegedly deceiving donors to an effort to assist Trump construct a wall alongside the U.S.-Mexico border.

Bannon, who pleaded not responsible, may resist 15 years in jail if convicted on these prices.

The state prices are much like federal prices filed towards Bannon and a number of other others in August 2020.

Bannon was by no means convicted within the federal case, after Trump pardoned him throughout the ultimate hours of his presidency.

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Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Enhancing by David Gregorio

Our Requirements: The Thomson Reuters Belief Ideas.

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