Supreme Court denies Trump aide Navarro’s jail release bid


Former Donald Trump adviser Peter Navarro holds a press conference before turning himself into a federal prison on March 19, 2024, in Miami, Florida. 

Joe Raedle | Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Monday denied a request by Peter Navarro, a former advisor to ex-President Donald Trump, to get out of jail while he appeals his four-month sentence for defying a subpoena from the House committee that investigated the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

The order rejecting Navarro’s application for release pending appeal stated only that his request was addressed to Justice Neil Gorsuch and referred to the court, which denied it.

It was the second time in six weeks that the high court shot down Navarro’s efforts to pause his jail sentence while he continues to fight a guilty verdict on two counts of contempt of Congress.

Navarro, 74, surrendered to a federal prison in Miami on March 19 to begin serving his sentence.

Navarro was indicted after refusing to comply with a subpoena from the House select committee probing the events of Jan. 6, 2021, when a violent mob of Trump’s supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol and temporarily delayed the transfer of power to President Joe Biden.

Navarro claimed that the doctrine of executive privilege shielded him from responding to the subpoena. But much of the information sought by the committee was not covered by executive privilege, and Trump did not assert executive privilege in the first place, noted U.S. Solicitor General Elizabeth Prelogar in a March filing to the Supreme Court.

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She was responding to Navarro’s March 15 request to the high court for his release pending the appeal of his conviction.

On March 18, Chief Justice John Roberts denied that request, writing in a brief opinion that he saw “no basis to disagree” with the rulings of lower courts that Navarro “forfeited” arguments related to executive privilege. Roberts noted that the release proceedings are “distinct from his pending appeal on the merits” of the case.

On April 2, Navarro’s lawyers renewed his bid to halt the report-to-prison order, this time asking Gorsuch to take up the request.

The lawyers noted that Navarro had already served 15 days in jail at that time. They added that a federal appellate court in Washington, D.C., set a briefing schedule for his appeal that is not set to conclude until mid-July — after the completion of Navarro’s sentence.

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