A source familiar with the department’s investigation spoke this week, on the condition of anonymity. They said now that Bannon has been pardoned, it “would be up to the state of Florida to continue pursuing charges against We Build the Wall”.
“Officials both inside and outside the White House in Trump’s proximity” pushed for Trump to issue an eleventh-hour pardon from money laundering and fraud conspiracy charges, said a source familiar with the Bannon pardon talks who requested anonymity.
“I’m not concerned about any state’s prosecution of the wall organisation or even for Brian Kolfage specifically,” said the source, who also has knowledge of the wall group. “Ultimately, I believe the facts of We Build the Wall speak for themselves and those charges won’t stand up. What that non-profit accomplished was still vastly superior to other organisations formed for those purposes.”
Bannon ally and former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who is a vice president of the We Build the Wall effort, unsuccessfully sued in federal court to get the group’s remaining $3.5 million released late last year.
“More money was spent on lawyers early in We Build the Wall than on all of the initial organisers combined. In fact, it was the group’s second-largest expense besides construction,” said this source familiar with Bannon’s pardon. “There is a broad concern that under Kobach’s direction the money will get swallowed into legal fees, instead of to finish the project.”