'The Defendant’s claims are false': Justice Department throws cold water on Peter Navarro's complaints

'The Defendant’s claims are false': Justice Department throws cold water on Peter Navarro's complaints
Peter Navarro (screengrab).

The U.S. Dept. of Justice in court filings says former top Trump advisor and “Big Lie” promoter Peter Navarro, arrested and charged with criminal contempt of Congress last week, is making “misrepresentations” and “false” claims, including that he was denied food and water and denied his right to call an attorney.

Since the moment he was arraigned and allowed to leave the courtroom Navarro has repeatedly made seemingly wild claims, including that he should not have been arrested at the airport, that he was put in “leg irons,” that he was “strip-searched,” that law enforcement officials refused to allow him to call an attorney – despite also repeatedly stating he would be representing himself, including before a judge – and that he was denied food and water.

In fact, three days after his arrest, Navarro added to his list of complaints, including that he was placed in solitary confinement:

“Leg irons/hand cuffs, strip search, no food/water. Solitary confinement. Illegally denied access to my attorney. All for standing up for Trump/Constitution,” he tweeted. “Help finance legal effort AND put Trump back in WH. Order Taking Back Trump’s America today.”

It’s unclear why he needs a legal fund if he is representing himself.

Here’s Navarro that same day on Fox News making similar and additional claims:

In a court filing published by Politico, the Dept. of Justice asks a federal judge to deny Navarro’s request for a 45-day continuance (extension), “so that he can obtain counsel and so that his civil lawsuit against various members of Congress and the U.S. Attorney can proceed.”

“The Defendant’s submission contains numerous misrepresentations and provides no justification for the delay he requests,” DOJ says. They also say Navarro refused an attorney “when it was previously offered and insisted that he would proceed pro see,” meaning he would represent himself.

“In addition, he cites no authority under which a speedy trial can be delayed to allow a civil case to proceed.”

DOJ says Navarro “bases his request for a continuance, in part, on his accusations that the Government is attempting to deprive him of counsel—for example, by allegedly denying him a call to counsel upon his arrest and filing motions in the normal course of proceeding with this case.”

“The Defendant’s claims are false,” DOJ says point-blank.

“The Justice Department also released a copy of an FBI agent’s report on Thursday, which detailed Navarro’s arrest at Reagan National Airport and describes how agents accommodated him by giving him chocolates, allowing him time to comfort a travel companion at the airport and repeatedly adjusting his handcuffs by loosening them and giving more space between his wrists after he complained,” The Associated Press reports:

It said Navarro was advised of his rights and was told the agents didn’t want to interview him. He asked to make a phone call, the report said, and an agent told him they would contact his attorney if he gave them the name of the lawyer.
The report says Navarro responded, 'I’m supposed to be on live television tonight. I’d like to call the producer and tell him I’m not going to be there. Can I have my phone?' The agent then told him that they would quickly make arrangements for a call with his lawyer, if he provided the attorney’s name.

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