Peter Navarro back in court after calling for mistrial

September 13, 2023

Judge Amit Mehta heard testimony Wednesday in U.S. District Court in DC after former Trump advisor Peter Navarro called for a mistrial hearing following his contempt of Congress guilty verdict.

A jury in Washington DC last week found Navarro guilty of of two counts of criminal contempt of Congress after he refused to comply with last year’s House Select January 6 Committee, which subpoenaed him for his testimony in February 2022 as part of its investigation into the 2021 insurrection that stemmed from efforts to overturn President Biden’s election victory over Trump.

During the trial, Mehta rejected an argument from Navarro that he was protected from Congressional subpoena under executive privilege.

At Tuesday’s post-trial hearing, court security officer Rosa Torres was pressed by Navarro attorney John Rowley about an incident during the trial involving several jurors on a “20-45 minute” break. Torres testified that the jurors had not been wearing juror badges while outside, they remained at a distance from the media, and they were not approached by protesters—though she conceded that at the time in question there was at least one protester carrying a flag and a poster.

The prosecution argued that Navarro’s team could have raised concerns about the jury taking what Torres called a “fresh air” break before the verdict was handed down.

Mehta told attorneys the court has security footage and “public source video” of when the jurors stepped outside.

He did not plan to issue a ruling Wednesday. Rather, another hearing on the mistrial motion was scheduled to take place in 14 days.

Navarro is the second former Trump aide to be prosecuted for failing to cooperate with the January 6 Committee. Steve Bannon was convicted last year on two contempt counts. Bannon’s case is currently on appeal.

Each criminal count against Navarro carries a maximum sentence of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.

PHOTO: Peter Navarro talks to reporters following guilty verdict

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