Steve Bannon won’t be spending his prison term in a ‘Club Fed’ as he had hoped, sources say | CNN Politics (2024)


Whenformer Donald Trump adviser Steve Bannongoes to prison, he won’t be serving time at what’s known as a “Club Fed,” the most comfortable type of facility in the federal system, as he had wanted,according to people familiar with the arrangements.

Instead of a minimum-security prison camp, wheremany nonviolent offendersserve their time,Bannon – now a right-wing podcaster with a following of loyal Trump supporters – is set to reportnext monthto the low-security federal prison in Danbury, Connecticut, one of the sources told CNN.

A federal judge ruled recentlythatBannon must turn himself in by July 1to begin servinga four-monthsentencefor contempt of Congress even as he appeals the case. His attorneys initially thought he may be able to do his time at a camp, the sources said.

ButBannon isn’t eligible for the lowest-level prison setup because he still has a pending criminal case against him in New York,where he is fighting the charges and set to go to trial in September. That case accuses him of defrauding donors in a fundraising effort branded the “We Build the Wall”campaign for a border wallbetween the US and Mexico.

Bannon was convicted by a federal jury two years ago in Washington, DC, for not complying withasubpoenafor aninterview and documents in the US House’s January 6, 2021, investigation. He has remained a staunch Trump ally and has been a vocal supporter of his presidential reelection bid.

Former White House Chief StrategistSteve Bannon speaks on stage during "Turning Points: The People's Convention" on June 15, 2024 at Huntington Place Convention Center in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by JEFF KOWALSKY / AFP) (Photo by JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP via Getty Images) Jeff Kowalsky/AFP/Getty Images Related article Bannon vows Trump’s opponents will be prosecuted in a second term

Bannon’s lawyers havewritten to the DC US Circuit Court of Appeals that his imprisonment shouldn’t happen this summer, as the trial-level judge has ordered, because he would be behind bars “for the four-month period leading up to the November election, when millions of Americans look to him for information on important campaign issues,” according to a recent filing for Bannon.

“This would also effectively bar Mr. Bannon from serving as a meaningful advisor in the ongoing national campaign,” Bannon’s lawyers wrote.

TheFederalBureau of Prisons declined to comment, saying it could not release specific information on prisoners until after they’re in custody, for security and privacy reasons.

The prison in Connecticut where Bannon will live houses a large number of white-collar criminals, but it alsomay houseviolentand sexoffenders in its men’s population.

It doesn’t have cells, and instead houses its inmates in open pods. Yet it does have a noticeable barrier—referred to colloquially as “the wall”—betweenthe prisonfacilityand the outside world, which prison camps don’t have.

More than 1,000 male prisoners are in the Danbury facility. Itsmuch smalleradjacent prison camp for women was immortalized ina formerprisoner’s memoir that inspired the TV show “Orange is the New Black.”

Some of Bannon’s defense attorneys, when contacted by CNN on Monday, weren’t aware of the plans or available, and Bannon hasn’t commented directly.

Rikers Island possibility

Bannon couldstillpotentiallyface rougher prison environments. He may need to be held in a facility in New York City, such as the infamous Rikers Island jail, during his state trial proceedings if it takes place while he is still serving his federal sentence, one of the sources said.

His time infederalprison is likely to run through October if no appeals court intervenes, the person said.

Bannonand Peter Navarro–another Trump adviser who was sent to prison for contempt of Congress in theJanuary 6 investigation –are not able to be released earlier than their four-month terms in prison, as some first-time offenders can be, because their sentences don’t include time under supervised release, people familiar withtheirsituations tell CNN.

Navarro is set to be released on July 17.This means both Navarro and Bannon will be behind bars during the Republican National Convention in mid-July.

Both men retained prison consultant Sam Mangel to help them have the best setup on the inside.

Bannon is awaiting word from the DC Circuitthis weekon whether a panel of three judges would be willing to keep him out of prison for the moment.He has already lost one round of appeals, but his lawyers say he intends to go to the Supreme Court.

Bannon and Trump

Bannon still maintains close connectionsto Trump and hispolitical world​.

Bannonspoke at a conservative gathering in Detroit this weekend where Trump also spoke. Bannon vowedthat Trump’s political opponents and federal law enforcement authoritieswould face blowbackif Trump wins a second term as president.

“You are going to be investigated, prosecuted and incarcerated,” Bannon said.

And Boris Epshteyn, one of the most influential legal advisers around Trump currently,hasbeen part of Bannon’s legal defense strategy, according to multiple sources familiar with thematter.

On Monday,Bannon saidthe formerpresidentwas calling him duringhis podcast. Bannonanswered the phone and saidhe would callTrumpback.

CNN’s Owen Dahlkamp, Sara MurrayandAlayna Treenecontributed to this report.

Steve Bannon won’t be spending his prison term in a ‘Club Fed’ as he had hoped, sources say | CNN Politics (2024)


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