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Appeals court upholds Steve Bannon’s conviction for contempt of Congress

Appeals court upholds Steve Bannon's conviction for contempt of Congress

WASHINGTON — A three-judge panel of the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia has upheld Steve Bannon’s conviction on two counts of contempt of Congress.

Bannon was convicted after a trial in 2022 and sentenced to four months in prison. The trial judge, however, stayed Bannon’s sentence, allowing him to remain free pending his appeal.

Bannon still has the option of asking the full bench of the D.C. Circuit to hear his case, or he can petition the Supreme Court for review.

An order issued by the D.C. Circuit said the judges’ mandate will not officially take effect until seven days after further appeal attempts are resolved. That means Bannon is unlikely to have to report to prison immediately.

In a statement Friday night, Bannon’s attorney said he will be asking the full D.C. Circuit to hear his case.

“Mr. Bannon will now seek redress before the full Court of Appeals,” David I. Schoen said. “That is the next step.”

“There are many fundamentally important constitutional issues at stake in this case,” Schoen also said. “Today’s decision is wrong as a matter of law and it reflects a very dangerous view of the threshold for criminal liability for any defendant in our country and for future political abuses of the congressional hearing process.”

Bannon, who was an aide to former President Donald Trump, was convicted in July of 2022 when a jury found him guilty of two contempt of Congress charges for failing to comply with a subpoena for documents and testimony issued by the House select committee that investigated the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection.

Arguing before the appeals court last fall in an effort to overturn the four-month prison sentence, Bannon’s attorney asserted that his client couldn’t comply with those subpoenas because Trump had invoked executive privilege. In addition to jail time, Bannon was fined $6,500.

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