Trump Responds to Bannon Arrest

President calls it 'very sad,' adds he never liked premise of crowdfunding a border wall
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 20, 2020 12:54 PM CDT

(Newser) – The details are filling in on the surprise arrest of Steve Bannon Thursday morning on accusations that he and others ripped off donors who gave money to their "We Build the Wall" online campaign. The central allegation: Bannon and three other defendants “defrauded hundreds of thousands of donors, capitalizing on their interest in funding a border wall to raise millions of dollars, under the false pretense that all of that money would be spent on construction,” says Audrey Strauss, acting United States attorney in Manhattan, per the New York Times. Coverage:

  • On a boat: The feds arrested Bannon in an unusual place: aboard a 150-foot yacht on Long Island Sound off the coast of Westbrook, Connecticut, reports NBC News. Another nugget: He was arrested by the US Postal Inspection Service.
  • Trump distances: President Trump called the arrest of his former chief strategist "very sad" and said he did not know the others involved. He added that he never liked the premise of crowdfunding a border wall. "I know nothing about the project, other than I didn't like, when I read about it, I didn't like it," he said. "I said this is for government, this isn't for private people, and it sounded to me like showboating, and I think I let my opinion be very strongly stated at the time."

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