WASHINGTON (Fwrd Axis) — A jury found former Trump White House adviser Steve Bannon guilty on two counts of contempt of Congress for defying a subpoena from the January 6 committee.
The verdict came after the jury deliberated for just three hours on Friday. Assistant U.S. Attorney Molly Gaston told jurors the case was “not complicated” but stressed its importance.
“This case is not complicated, but it is important,” she said. “Mr. Bannon did not want to recognize Congress’ authority or play by the government’s rules.”
Steve Bannon’s team did not put forward any witnesses nor offer a defense of any kind, instead choosing to give closing arguments and rest.
Bannon’s sentencing is set for October 21 and he faces a minimum sentence of 30 days in prison and up to one year per charge. He could also be fined $100 to $100,000. He is expected to appeal.
Jan. 6 Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) and Vice Chair Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.,) released a statement and called Bannon’s conviction “a victory for the rule of law and an important affirmation of the Select Committee’s work.”
“As the prosecutor stated, Steve Bannon ‘chose allegiance to Donald Trump over compliance with the law.’ Just as there must be accountability for all those responsible for the events of January 6th, anyone who obstructs our investigation into these matters should face consequences,” they said in a joint statement.
During the trial, the Justice Department told jurors that Bannon did not turn over documents and testify before the Jan. 6 committee when he was required to do so because he thought he was above the law.
Bannon and his lawyers said they plan to appeal the decision.
“You will see this case reversed on appeal. You will see all of these resources, three federal prosecutors, four FBI agents for a misdemeanor are being wasted,” Schoen said. “You cannot find another crime in which, misdemeanor or felony, in which a person is convicted without believing or knowing or having reason to believe he or she did anything wrong.”