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Former Trump Adviser Peter Navarro Faces Sentencing for Congressional Contempt

Peter Navarro arriving at the court for the start of his trial on contempt of Congress Courtesy of Victoria Pickering.

Peter Navarro, a former adviser to U.S. President Donald Trump, is set for sentencing in a Washington federal court for contempt of Congress. The sentencing, related to his refusal to cooperate with the investigation into the January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, is scheduled for Thursday, as reported by Reuters.

Federal prosecutors are advocating for a six-month prison term for Navarro. They argue that he prioritized loyalty to Trump over compliance with the law, defying a subpoena to provide documents and testimony to the House of Representatives committee investigating the Capitol riot and Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.

Navarro’s defense team is seeking probation, contending that he believed he was exempt from cooperating with Congress due to Trump’s supposed invocation of executive privilege. This legal doctrine often shields certain presidential records and communications from disclosure.

In September, Navarro, 74, was convicted on two counts of contempt of Congress. During his trial, U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta determined that Trump had not explicitly instructed Navarro to assert privilege, a claim Navarro was barred from presenting to the jury.

Navarro, known for advising Trump on trade and serving on a COVID-19 task force, has been a prominent proponent of Trump’s unfounded claims of widespread fraud in the 2020 election. The House Jan. 6 committee sought Navarro’s insights on his “Green Bay Sweep” plan, aimed at disrupting the certification of election results.

Navarro has requested a delay in his sentence while he appeals the conviction. His case follows that of Steve Bannon, another high-profile Trump adviser, who was sentenced to four months in prison in 2022 for a similar contempt charge. Bannon has not yet served his sentence, pending an appeal of his conviction.