On Monday, federal prosecutors revealed that the Justice Department met with Donald Trump’s attorney last month regarding the pending contempt case against former advisor Steve Bannon.
The Hill reports:
“On June 29, 2022, former President Donald Trump’s attorney, who sent the letter on which the Defendant claimed his noncompliance was based, confirmed what his correspondence has already established: that the former President never invoked executive privilege over any particular information or materials; that the former President’s counsel never asked or was asked to attend the Defendant’s deposition before the Select Committee; that the Defendant’s attorney misrepresented to the Committee what the former President’s counsel had told the Defendant’s attorney; and that the former President’s counsel made clear to the Defendant’s attorney that the letter provided no basis for total noncompliance,” the filing reads.
The revelations come less than two days after Bannon’s lawyers said in a letter to the House Jan. 6 Select Committee that their client is now willing to testify before the panel, partly because Trump has decided to “waive” any assertions of executive privilege over his former adviser.
“President Trump has provided us with a letter, which is attached, attesting to the fact that back in October 2021, he did invoke executive privilege with respect to Mr. Bannon’s testimony and document production,” Robert Costello, an attorney representing Bannon, wrote to the committee in the July 9 letter.
DOJ prosecutors said their interview appears to contradict Bannon’s lawyer’s claims to the select committee.
“Even the Defendant’s claim that the reason he is now willing to testify is because the former President is ‘waiving’ executive privilege is subject to question given all of the evidence and law that has been addressed in this case, of which he must be aware, demonstrating that executive privilege never provided a basis for total noncompliance in the first place,” they wrote in the filing.
Bannon’s trial is scheduled to begin next week.