Federal prosecutors on Thursday indicted one-time presidential aide Steve Bannon and three others on charges of taking money donated to help build a wall along the southern border, authorities said.
Bannon, Brian Kolfage, Andrew Badolato, Timothy Shea “and others orchestrated a scheme to defraud hundreds of thousands of donors,” according to prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York.
The defendants’ online crowdfunding campaign “We Build The Wall” raised more than $25 million, with Kolfage “repeatedly and falsely assured the public that he would ‘not take a penny in salary,'” prosecutors said in a statement. And Bannon “publicly stated, ‘we’re a volunteer organization,’” prosecutors said.
But in fact, prosecutors said, the defendants took hundreds of thousands of donated dollars and used them for personal expenses.
Bannon is the former executive chairman of Breitbart News and once served as chief strategist for President Donald Trump.