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Proud Boys Charged With Seditious Conspiracy in Jan 6th Capitol Riot

Proud Boys Charged With Seditious Conspiracy in Jan 6th Capitol Riot

The former leader of the far-right Proud Boys extremist group and other members were charged Monday with seditious conspiracy for what federal prosecutors say was a coordinated attack on the U.S. Capitol to stop Congress from certifying President Joe Biden’s 2020 electoral victory.

The latest indictment against Henry “Enrique” Tarrio alleges that the Proud Boys conspired to forcibly oppose the lawful transfer of presidential power. Tarrio and the others — Ethan Nordean, Joseph Biggs, Zachary Rehl, and Dominic Pezzola — were previously charged with different conspiracy counts. The indictment comes as the January 6th House Select Committee prepares to begin public hearings this week to lay out its findings.

WASHINGTON, DC-DEC12: Proud Boys march in support of Donald Trump in Washington, DC, December 12, 2020. (Photo by Evelyn Hockstein/For The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Tarrio wasn’t in Washington, D.C., when the riot erupted on January 6th, but authorities say he helped put into motion the violence that day. Police arrested Tarrio in Washington two days before the riot and charged him with vandalizing a Black Lives Matter banner at a historic Black church during a protest in December 2020. Tarrio was released from jail on January 14th after serving his five-month sentence for that case.

The seditious conspiracy charges against the Proud Boys are among the most serious filed so far, but they weren’t the first. Eleven members or associates of the anti-government Oath Keepers militia group, including its founder and leader Stewart Rhodes, were indicted in January on seditious conspiracy charges in a serious escalation in the largest investigation in the Justice Department’s history. Three Oath Keepers have already pleaded guilty to the rarely used Civil War-era charge that calls for up to 20 years in prison. The indictment alleges that the Oath Keepers and their associates prepared in the weeks leading up to January 6th as if they were going to war, discussing things like weapons and training.

Tarrio and the other Proud Boys are scheduled to stand trial in August in Washington, D.C.’s federal court.

 

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