Federal prosecutors on Thursday unsealed indictments against one-time presidential aide Steve Bannon and three others on charges of taking money donated to help build a wall along the southern border.
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.
They were indicted on one count of allegedly conspiring to commit wire fraud and another for conspiring to commit money laundering.
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,'” according to the indictment. And Bannon “publicly stated, ‘we’re a volunteer organization,’” the court document said.
But in fact, prosecutors said, the defendants took hundreds of thousands of donated dollars and used them for personal expenses.