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Tags: peter navarro | trial | contempt of congress

Request for New Trial Denied for Ex-Trump Adviser Navarro

By    |   Tuesday, 16 January 2024 03:23 PM EST

U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta on Tuesday denied Peter Navarro's request for a new trial on contempt of Congress charges, saying Navarro did not prove that a jury in his trial last year was prejudiced by seeing Jan. 6-related protesters outside the courthouse during a break before they delivered their verdict.

Navarro is a former adviser to former President Donald Trump.

Mehta, a judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, also ruled that Navarro's lawyers knew that the jury could be exposed to the protesters but had waited to say anything until they knew if the jury would rule in his favor, The Hill reported.

"A defendant cannot learn of alleged improper external influence on the jury, remain silent and gamble on a favorable verdict, only to complain afterwards that a new trial is warranted because the jury was unduly prejudiced by that outside influence," Mehta said in his ruling. "That is precisely what occurred here."

Stanley Woodward, representing Navarro, said the jurors were exposed to the protesters after Navarro was linked to the circumstances of the Jan. 6, 2021 protests and actions at the Capitol.

Mehta, reviewing video from the day, said the jurors only interacted with each other and a court security officer, and that nobody directed any words or displayed signs at them. 

"No one approached them," he said. "Moreover, the scene itself was relatively placid. There was no indiscriminate yelling or chanting. No one held a sign above their head. There were no activities resembling a 'protest.'"

Rosa Roldan Torres, the court security officer who was with the jurors, testified last year that they removed their tags before they went outside on break and that nobody approached them. Mehta said the jurors were outside on break for about eight minutes. 

Navarro was convicted in September on two contempt counts after he would not obey a subpoena served by the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 events. 

The first count involved his failure to provide documents in the case, with the second charge filed when he failed to appear for a deposition.

Navarro told reporters in September that he was convicted because prosecutors made suggestions about his "association with J6" and that he expected his case to reach the Supreme Court level because of questions of executive privilege for White House staff. 

Navarro is scheduled to be sentenced next week. Last year, fellow ex-White House adviser Steve Bannon was sentenced to four months in prison after his conviction of two counts of contempt of Congress, but has not yet served the time.

Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta on Tuesday denied a request for a new trial on contempt of Congress charges for Peter Navarro, former adviser to former President Donald Trump.
peter navarro, trial, contempt of congress
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Tuesday, 16 January 2024 03:23 PM
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