(Trends Wide) — Steve Bannon pleads not guilty to the criminal contempt of Congress charges against him, according to a notice filed in federal court Wednesday.
The notice came before a hearing scheduled for Thursday morning, which would be Bannon’s first appearance before US District Judge Carl Nichols, who will oversee his case and any possible contempt trial for failing to testify or deliver documents to the commission. of the House of Representatives investigating the assault on the Capitol on January 6.
Bannon said he did not need the judge to read his charges in public hearing, according to the filing.
This should mean that the court could skip a formal arraignment this Thursday. The virtual conference scheduled for the morning would be a simple control with the judge to discuss the time and other procedural steps in the case.
Bannon’s statement opens court proceedings for what he promised will be a bitter defense.
The former adviser to former President Donald Trump had appeared in court on Monday after being charged last week with one charge related to his refusal to appear for a deposition and another related to his refusal to present documents to the House Select Committee. Each charge carries a minimum of 30 days and a maximum of one year in jail, as well as a fine of up to $ 100,000, the Justice Department said.
“I tell you right now, this will be a misdemeanor from hell for (Attorney General) Merrick Garland, (Speaker of the House) Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden,” Bannon told reporters after the hearing, swearing that his team is “on the move” to “go on the offensive.”
Prosecutors did not attempt to arrest him before the trial. Under conditions approved by the judge, Bannon agreed to check in weekly, surrender his passport, notify any out-of-district travel and seek court approval for travel outside of the United States.
The House committee had issued a subpoena to obtain documents and testimony from Bannon in early October. In seeking their cooperation, the panel noted reports that Bannon spoke to Trump in the run-up to the Jan. 6 riot on Capitol Hill, who was present in the so-called war room of Trump’s allies at the Willard Hotel in Washington as the attack unfolded and that he made comments in his podcast the day before predicting that “all hell would break loose” the next day.
“In summary, Mr. Bannon appears to have played a multifaceted role in the events of January 6, and the American people are entitled to hear his first-hand testimony about his actions,” the House committee said in its report that files a contempt resolution.
Trends Wide’s Zachary Cohen and Chandelis Duster contributed to this report.