September 30, 2022
Ex-Trump aide Navarro indicted; Meadows won't be charged

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former Trump White House official Peter Navarro has been indicted on charges that he refused to cooperate with a congressional investigation into the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, but the Justice Department spared two other advisers, including the ex-president’s chief of staff, Mark Meadows, from criminal prosecution.

The department’s decision to not prosecute Meadows and Dan Scavino, another adviser to former President Donald Trump, was revealed in a letter sent Friday by a federal prosecutor to a lawyer for the House of Representatives. The move was reported hours after the indictment of Navarro and a subsequent, fiery court appearance in which he vowed to contest the contempt of Congress charges.

The flurry of activity comes just days before the House committee leading the investigation into the riot at the Capitol holds a primetime hearing aimed at presenting the American public with evidence it has collected about how the assault unfolded. The split decisions show how the Justice Department has opted to evaluate on a case-by-case basis contempt referrals it has received from Congress rather than automatically pursue charges against each and every Trump aide who has resisted congressional subpoenas.

The committee’s leaders called the decision to not prosecute Meadows and Scavino “puzzling.” In a statement late Friday, Reps. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., and Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., said: “We hope the Department provides greater clarity on this matter. … No one is above the law.”

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