Steve Bannon sentenced to four months in prison

(The hill) – Steve Bannon was sentenced to four months in prison on Friday for defying a subpoena from the House Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.

The former White House strategist was summoned by the panel in September last year after failing to provide the required documents and testimony when he railed against the committee.

Bannon claimed that he was unable to comply with the committee’s subpoena because of executive privilege. However, the panel attempted to speak to Bannon about events that transpired long after his brief tenure in the White House.

Federal District Court Judge Carl Nichols ruled that Bannon would also pay a $6,500 fine in addition to his four-month sentence, allowing Bannon to simultaneously serve a prison sentence on each contempt of Congress charge.

At the beginning of the hearing, Nichols said Bannon had “shown no remorse for his actions” and “has not yet demonstrated his intention to comply with the subpoena.”

But the judge also agreed to stay his sentence while Bannon appeals his guilty verdict.

A Justice Department prosecutor argued that Bannon deserved a severe sentence for his sweeping defiance of the committee’s subpoena, noting that “he never lifted a finger to find any relevant document” or to appear in person to investigate possible claim privileges.

“The importance of this case has everything to do with the defendant’s obligations as a citizen of the United States,” Assistant US Attorney Joseph Cooney told the court.

“No one, regardless of his means, position, the influence of his friends, or his patrons, is above the law.”

Bannon’s attorneys — David Schoen, one of President Trump’s impeachment attorneys, and Evan Corcoran, who is currently representing the former president in the Mar-a-Lago case — argued Bannon had no choice but to act in the face of the committee’s subpoena.

Trump’s claim to executive privilege has his hands tied, they argued, and Schoen said it was the “only lawful path he could pursue consistent with the Constitution and his obligation.”

A jury largely rejected that argument when it found Bannon guilty of contempt of Congress on both counts. Steve Bannon sentenced to four months in prison

Sarah Y. Kim

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