Steve Bannon Faces Criminal Charges Over Disobeying Jan 6th Committee

Written By BlabberBuzz | Friday, 15 October 2021 16:45

Steve Bannon maintains he will not testify before the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot until the matter of former President Trump's executive privilege is settled.

Bannon's lawyer on Thursday wrote a letter addressed to House select committee chair Rep. Bennie Thompson, reiterating to the committee that the former Trump adviser had no intention of testifying.

Bannon's lawyer, Robert Costello, revealed that Trump's lawyer Justin Clark had informed Bannon on Wednesday that Trump would be exercising executive privilege and directed Bannon not to produce documents or testify until the matter had been settled.

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The letter argued that 'Bannon's position is not in defiance of your Committee's subpoena.'

'That is an issue between the committee and President Trump's counsel and Mr. Bannon is not required to respond at this time,' Costello wrote in the letter.

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'We will not allow any witness to defy a lawful subpoena or attempt to run out the clock, and we will swiftly consider advancing a criminal contempt of Congress referral,' said committee chairman Bennie Thompson and vice chair Liz Cheney in a statement last week.

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'Until such time as you reach an agreement with President Trump or receive a court ruling as to the extent, scope and application of the executive privilege, in order to preserve the claim of executive or other privileges, Mr. Bannon will not be producing documents or testifying,' Costello said. 'Mr. Bannon will revisit his position if President Trump's position changes or if a court rules on the matter.'

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The letter noted that Bannon had been compliant with subpoenas to testify during the Mueller investigation and before the House and Senate Intelligence Committees. 'In each of those instances, when President Trump waived his invocation of executive privileges, Mr. Bannon testified.'

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Costello is a former deputy chief of the criminal division for the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Southern District of New York. The House committee last week allowed Bannon until this Thursday to appear before them, at which point they threatened to pursue criminal charges.

Bannon is the only one of the top Trump aides subpoenaed on September 23 who was not working for the Trump administration on January 6, the day of the attack on the U.S. Capitol.

He also represents Trump aide and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani in investigations about his business dealings. 'I stand with Trump and the Constitution,' he told DailyMail.com. Two other aides, former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and former Pentagon aide Kash Patel, are 'engaging' with the committee, lawmakers said in a statement.

The committee had claimed Bannon was trying 'to hide behind vague references to privileges.'

The committee's subpoenas had set a Thursday deadline for Bannon, Meadows, Patel and a fourth witness, former White House communications aide Dan Scavino, to provide documents. They also set dates for interviews next week.

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