Steve Bannon faces four months in jail after losing appeal for contempt of Congress charge

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Donald Trump ally Steve Bannon could soon be heading to jail after a federal court of appeals upheld his contempt of Congress conviction for failing to testify about the January 6 Capitol riot.

In a ruling on Friday morning, a three-judge panel with the Washington DC Court of Appeals denied Bannon’s appeal.

“As both this court and the Supreme Court have repeatedly explained, a contrary rule would contravene the text of the contempt statute and hamstring Congress’s investigatory authority,” Judge Bradley Garcia wrote.

“Because we have no basis to depart from that binding precedent, and because none of Bannon’s other challenges to his convictions have merit, we affirm.”

The ruling puts Bannon closer to facing his four-month jail sentence, which was on pause while the appeal played out.

A Washington DC jury convicted Bannon back in July 2022 with contempt of Congress after he failed to comply with a congressional subpoena related to the January 6 2021 Capitol riot.

In 2021, the investigating committee asked him to testify and produce documents related to the riots, but he refused to do so, according to the Washington DC US Attorney’s office.

Bannon was sentenced to four months in jail and handed a $6,500 fine in October 2022.

His sentence was put on hold after his legal team appealed the conviction.

Steve Bannon, pictured speaking at the 2024 Conservative Political Action Conference, lost his appeal to overturn his contempt of Congress conviction (Getty Images)

In their appeal, Bannon’s legal team argued the former-Trump aide did not “willfully” reject the subpoena, claiming he was only following the advice of his lawyers by not responding to it. But the appeals court didn’t buy this argument.

Bannon still has legal options, however. He could appeal to the full panel of judges serving in the capital’s highest court. He could also petition the US Supreme Court to hear his appeal.

The Independent has contacted Bannon’s attorney and the Washington DC US Attorney’s office for comment.

Peter Navarro, a fellow aide to Mr Trump, was also charged with contempt of Congress after failing to comply with a subpoena for the 6 January investigation. He was sentenced to four months in January and began his sentence in March after the Supreme Court refused to hear his appeal.

Bannon is also expected in court this September for his New York fraud trial.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office has accused him of duping donors into sending funds to build a wall along the US-Mexico border, arguing Bannon used the money for his personal gain instead.

In the case, Bannon is charged with money laundering, conspiracy, fraud.

He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The trial was originally set to begin this month but was pushed back because of Mr Trump’s hush money trial, which is being presided over by the same judge: Justice Juan Merchan.

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