Steve Bannon is in a pickle. For some reason, he decided to stiff his lawyers of nearly $500,000 for work defending him in various cases, including the criminal cases involving his dodgy “We Build The Wall” rip-off scheme. The result is that a judge has ordered Bannon to pay the $480,487.87 overdue legal bill plus “reasonable legal fees” to his old firm.
But now, as the law firm Davidoff Hutcher and Citron has sought to obtain Bannon’s financial records, the enemy of democracy is looking to the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to shield him.
The Daily Beast Explains:
Bannon has asked a New York state judge to block [the DHC] law firm from perusing through his bank statements and reviewing his assets, a request that has required Bannon to awkwardly concede that his personal finances likely have evidence that could bolster the Manhattan District Attorney’s case against him.
DHC’s taking of post-judgment discovery from Mr. Bannon poses a significant risk of compromising Mr. Bannon’s Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination,” Bannon’s current defense attorney, Harlan Protass, said in a court filing earlier this month.
Protass also argued that subjecting Bannon to questions under oath from the aggrieved law firm’s attorneys “also poses a significant risk” for the same reason: he might say something damning that could bolster two ongoing criminal cases against him.
Bannon is currently facing mutiple criminal charges for defrauding donors to his “We Build the Wall” “nonprofit.” He’s also appealing his conviction for refusing to honor a Congressional subpoena from the Jan. 6 Committee.
So, Bannon is afraid that his finances will reveal something incriminating in his current criminal cases. But it would not surprise me if he’s also worried the records will provide the bases for new charges, too.