Former FBI Director James Comey has said Steve Bannon “is in a world of trouble” after former Trump campaign manager and White House adviser was arrested on a charge of skimming donations from a wall-mounted fundraising campaign the border with Mexico.
“It’s another reminder of the kind of people this president surrounds him with,” Comey told CBS’s Face the Nation on Sunday.
Bannon is the latest figure with close ties to the president who has found himself in trouble with the law. Others include former campaign chair Paul Manafort, former attorney Michael Cohen and former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
Comey is also a former U.S. Attorney for Southern District of New York, where Bannon was indicted last week.
“At this point, they could almost start their own crime family,” Comey told CBS, echoing the passage in his book A Higher Loyalty, released in April 2018, in which he became famous with Trump, who introduced him in May 2017 fired, with mafia bosses including Sammy “the Bull” Gravano.
‘It’s a very serious case. The southern district of New York has called it in a very detailed indictment, called a speaking accusation, and he is in a world of trouble. “
Bannon has pleaded guilty and faces up to 20 years in prison as a convict.
“It’s a very serious fraud case with an enormous amount of money being stolen from innocent victims,” Comey said. “That will increase potential penalties.”
Bannon was released on a $ 5m bond, backed by $ 1.75m in cash as real estate. He has until Sept. 3 to find the mortgage. Three other men, Brian Kolfage, Andrew Badolato and Timothy Shea, were also arrested in the alleged scheme to defraud the We Build the Wall campaign, which authorities said raised more than $ 25 million.
Kolfage, Badolato and Shea have not yet filed lawsuits. In a statement on his Facebook page on Saturday, Kolfage said he has “got around one of the best super-lawyers who is not afraid to fight back in the politically motivated attacks against me”.
Bannon, Comey said, was “in trouble because the indictment contained it in such detail, including excerpts from texts. If you’ve Steve Bannon [or] you are his lawyers, you read this saying, ‘I’m going down here.’
“I do not know what the next steps are for him and his defenders, but that’s what I meant by ‘world of problems.'”
Comey has proved a troublesome opponent for Trump, who unequivocally, and infamously, secured a pledge of personal loyalty before deciding to fire him as FBI director.
Comey recently released a new book, Saving Justice: Truth, Transparency, and Trust, due for release in January. Also in January, following the presidential election, Showtime will release The Comey Rule, a two-part adaptation of A Higher Loyalty.
Comey is played by Jeff Daniels, Trump by Irish actor Brendan Gleeson. Bannon does not appear in published cast lists.