NEW YORK — Former Trump administration strategist Steve Bannon is expected to surrender Thursday on criminal charges brought by the Manhattan district attorney’s office.
The allegations in the sealed indictment are expected to mirror a federal fraud case that ended when then-President Donald Trump pardoned Bannon, a longtime ally, just before leaving the White House. The last-minute presidential pardon did not spare Bannon from possible state prosecution.
A source with knowledge of the case confirmed Bannon will turn himself in.
“They are coming after all of us, not only President Trump and myself,” Bannon said in a statement denouncing the charges as politically motivated. “I am never going to stop fighting. In fact, I have not yet begun to fight. They will have to kill me first.”
Bannon then went on to blast Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, dismissing the “phony” allegations made two months before the national midterm elections.
“This is nothing more than a partisan political weaponization of the criminal justice system,” he said.
Bannon, 68, was accused in an August 2020 federal indictment of skimming $1 million from a $25 million fundraising effort dubbed “We Build the Wall,” intended to finance a barricade on the U.S.-Mexico border.
He was charged alongside longtime associate Andrew Badolato, Air Force veteran and triple amputee Brian Kolfage and Colorado businessman Timothy Shea.
The feds said the men spent money they stole from supporters of Trump’s signature immigration policy on cosmetic surgery, golf carts and credit card debt.
Badolato and Kolfage pleaded guilty to the charges in April, with their sentencings set for this December. The case against Shea ended in a mistrial in June after a holdout juror alleged a government “witch hunt” and dismissed his fellow jurors as biased liberals.
Shea, whose energy drink company claims to sell “Ultra Hydrating Liberal Tears Made in America,” is set for retrial next month.
Bannon was arrested on the federal charges aboard an exiled Chinese billionaire’s 150-foot yacht, which was docked off the coast of Connecticut. But less than six months later, Trump pardoned him as part of an eleventh-hour clemency blitz before leaving office.
Thursday’s impending surrender on state charges was initially reported by The Washington Post. A spokeswoman for the DA’s office declined to confirm or comment on the report.
Attorneys for Bannon declined to comment Wednesday. It was not yet clear who would represent him in the Manhattan case.
Bannon later reiterated his belief that the charges were part of an ongoing attack sparked by the popularity of his radio show among the “MAGA grassroots movement.”
“The (Manhattan U.S. Attorney) did the exact same thing in 2020 to take me out of the election,” he declared. “It didn’t work then, it certainly won’t work now.”
Less than two months ago, Bannon was convicted of contempt of Congress for not cooperating with the special House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection. His sentencing was expected next month, with Bannon facing a possible two years in federal prison.