Peter Navarro, former Trump adviser, ordered to prison for 4-month sentence

Peter Navarro, who served as a top adviser to former President Donald Trump, has been ordered to report to prison no later than March 19 to begin a sentence for contempt of Congress, his attorneys said Sunday.

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In a court filing, attorneys representing Navarro said he has been “ordered to report to the custody of the Bureau of Prisons, FCI Miami, on or before 2:00PM EDT on March 19, 2024.” They asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to stay the order as he appeals his conviction.

A jury last year convicted Navarro, 74, of two counts of contempt of Congress for defying a subpoena from the House select committee that investigated the Jan. 6, 2020, violence at the U.S. Capitol. In January, a judge sentenced him to serve four months in prison.

U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta last month declined to allow Navarro to remain free while appealing his sentence.

In Sunday’s court filing, Navarro’s attorneys argued that substantial questions remain about whether Trump ordered Navarro to assert executive privilege, as he has claimed. Mehta earlier rejected that argument, saying that there was no evidence to prove that Trump ordered him to assert privilege, Politico reported.

“Dr. Navarro’s challenge to the district court’s determinations with respect to executive privilege and/or precluding Dr. Navarro from asserting executive privilege as a defense at trial are complicated issues rife with ‘close questions’ or questions, ‘that very well could be decided the other way,’” his attorneys wrote in Sunday’s filing.

Last week, the Justice Department argued against Navarro’s release, calling his arguments “meritless.”

“Release is unwarranted,” prosecutors wrote in a document filed in court on March 4. “As the district court found, Navarro fails to show a ‘substantial question of law or fact of law or fact’ that is ‘likely’ to result in reversal or an order for a new trial.”

Navarro was the second top Trump adviser to be convicted of contempt charges after a jury found Steve Bannon guilty of failing to comply with a subpoena from the House select committee in 2022.

If Navarro’s appeal is rejected, he will become the first senior Trump adviser to serve jail time in relation to efforts to subvert the 2020 presidential election, Politico reported. Bannon was earlier sentenced to four months in prison for his contempt of Congress conviction, however, U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols later ordered that his sentence be stayed as he appeals his conviction.

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