Donald Trump pardons former strategist Steve Bannon

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US President Donald Trump has pardoned former chief strategist Steve Bannon aspart of a late flurry of clemency action benefiting nearly 150 people. Thepardons and commutations for 143 people, including Bannon, were announcedafter midnight on Wednesday in the final hours of Trump’s White House term. Astatement from the White House said: “Prosecutors pursued Mr Bannon withcharges related to fraud stemming from his involvement in a political project.“Mr Bannon has been an important leader in the conservative movement and isknown for his political acumen.” Bannon had been charged with duping thousandsof investors who believed their money would be used to fulfil Mr Trump’s chiefcampaign promise to build a wall along the southern border. Instead, heallegedly diverted over a million dollars, paying a salary to one campaignofficial and personal expenses for himself.