Top Trump Aides to Defy Subpoenas Issued by Capitol Riot Committee

Former Trump White House aides are expected to defy subpoena orders related to the Capitol attack on January 6. 

Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, deputy chief of staff Dan Scavino, strategist Steve Bannon and defense department aide Kash Patel are the four aides who were asked to provide documents and testimony about the insurrection. 

If the four aides defy the subpoena, it will mark the first major investigative hurdle faced by the select committee. The subpoenas were issued under the threat of criminal prosecution int he event of non-compliance. 

The subpoenas were issued nearly two weeks ago, on September 24. The request ordered the men to hand documents over by October 7, and appear for depositions by October 15. 

One of the aides, Scavano, hasn’t physically been served with the subpoena yet because investigators cannot locate him. His disappearance has meant he has dodged the repeated attempts to deliver the subpoena. 

Following the subpoenas, former President Trump said he would invoke executive privilege to block them. His plan to keep White House record on the Capitol attack a secret could delay and even stymie efforts by the committee, because it could potentially set off an extended legal battle over disclosure. The move will likely lead to constitutional clashes in court. 

The House Select Committee investigating the riot is chaired by Rep. Bennie Thompson (Democrat, Mississippi). The committee is investigating Trump’s incitement of his supporters to commit insurrection. Thompson told reporters that he was prepared to pursue criminal referrals to witnesses defying subpoenas and their deadlines. 

An additional round of subpoenas were issued at the end of September as well, to eleven people connected to Women for America First, including Trump’s 2016 campaign spokesperson Katrina Pierson. Those 11 subpoenas requested documents and deposition testimony regarding the individuals’ involvement in the riot. 

The January 6 riot left five dead and about 140 injured. 

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