Bannon allegedly pocketed some $1 million in donations, which federal prosecutors for the Southern District of New York said they used to repay hundreds of thousands of dollars of his own personal expenses. In 2020, federal agents arrested Bannon while he was aboard a luxury yacht off the coast of Connecticut. He pleaded not guilty, but was removed from the case after Trump granted a pardon in the twilight of his presidency.
Two of his federal co-defendants pleaded guilty to wire fraud conspiracy. Their sentencing scheduled for this week has been pushed back to December. A mistrial was declared when a jury reporting for the third time could not reach a unanimous verdict.
Presidential pardons only apply to federal charges and cannot shield Bannon from state prosecution. Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance opened a state investigation that his successor, Alvin Bragg, continued when he took office last year.
As Bannon arrived on Thursday morning, some onlookers hurled insults at the far-right iconoclast, which repeatedly fueled controversy. In the past, Bannon has suggested that Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, be executed. He also echoed Trump’s false claims that the 2020 election was stolen.
“Stop hurting America, you greasy crook,” a woman shouted as she entered the building, her brief remarks drowned out by the heckling.
Bannon, who faces arraignment Thursday afternoon, was separately convicted on contempt of Congress charges earlier this year after defying a subpoena related to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.