Donald Trump’s former campaign advisor Steve Bannon is facing fraud charges over allegedly stealing money from a “Build The Wall” fundraiser organization.
Steve Bannon’s role in the Donald Trump presidency has been a contentious one, and many critics have openly accused the former campaign advisor of nursing ties to the alt-right. In fact, Bannon officially departed the White House during the week following the Charlotteville “Unite The Right” rally, which ultimately cost Heather Heyer her life. Though Trump did his best to distance himself from the controversial Bannon, the impact of their partnership has cast a long shadow. Now, CNN reports that Bannon and three others are being charged with fraud associated with a border wall fundraising campaign.
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According to the report, Bannon’s charges stem from having “defrauded donors of hundreds of thousands of dollars” during a campaign ostensibly designed to raise funds for the notorious border wall. Apparently, Bannon and his three cohorts illegally took money from an organization called We Build the Wall and proceeded to use them for their own personal gain. The prosecutor claims that Bannon funneled over one million dollars through an organization called Non-Profit-1, using the ill-gotten funds to pay both himself and another defendant, Brian Kolfage.
At this time, charges stand for one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. Speaking on the charges, Acting Manhattan US Attorney Audrey Strauss broke them down as follows: “As alleged, the defendants defrauded hundreds of thousands of donors, capitalizing on their interest in funding a border wall to raise millions of dollars, under the false pretense that all of that money would be spent on construction.” Strauss proceeds to accuse Bannon, along with Kolfage, Andrew Badolato, and Timothy Shea, of using the money to fund their “lavish lifestyles.” Expect more developments from this to arrive following Bannon’s first courtroom appearance this afternoon. As of now, Donald Trump has yet to speak on the charges.