Former Trump Aide, Steve Bannon arrested over $25m Fraud

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A former aide to US President, Donald Trump, Steve Bannon has been arrested by US authorities for $25m fraud.

Bannonis accused of defrauding people who donated to a Mexican border wall fundraiser organised by the former aide and three others in 2018.

According to prosecutors, the fundraiser, titled, ‘We Build the Wall’ was able to raise more than $25 million which the organisers including Bannon said would be contributed towards building the border wall between US and México. They however used the funds for personal purposes other than what they told donors they would do.

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Steve Bannon was arrested alongside Brian Kolfage, the founder of the fundraiser, Andrew Badolato and Timothy Shear.

The four men are accused of receiving thousands of dollars in donor funds which were used in ways not consistent with the public representation of the organisation.

Brian Kolfage is accused of using at least $350,000 for his personal use and made efforts to conceal his actions. Bannon is also accused of receiving more than $1 million from the fund which he also used for personal expenses.

According to prosecutors,

“Not only did they lie to donors, they schemed to hide their misappropriation of funds by creating sham invoices and accounts to launder donations and cover up their crimes, showing no regard for the law or the truth.”

All four men were charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Reacting, President Trump said he hadn’t had dealings with Bannon who was eased out of the White House in 2017, for a long time.

He also expressed the view that he felt the GoFundMe campaign was wrong.

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