US: Charges against four leading “Proud Boys” | Free press

Five people died in a storm on the Capitol after a Donald Trump rally. The ex-president had previously praised the “Proud Boys”, four of them are now on trial.

Washington (AP) – Two and a half months after the storming of the Capitol by supporters of then US President Donald Trump, four leading members of the right-wing radical group “Proud Boys” have been charged.

The four men are charged with conspiracy, obstruction of security forces and destruction of government property in connection with the Jan. 6 attack, according to charges circulated by US media on Friday (local time).

The defendants from different states are three leaders of the respective local Proud Boys offshoots and a self-appointed organizer of the group’s events. Other “Proud Boys” members have already been charged.

The indictment states that the four leading “Proud Boys” between the ages of 30 and 37 tried to prevent Congress from certifying the results of last November’s presidential election. They are also said to have encouraged others to join the Washington protest against Trump’s defeat, which later led to the attack on the Capitol. They had collected donations for travel expenses. According to the indictment, they also purchased “paramilitary equipment”, such as protective vests and radios. During the planning, communication was done via coded channels.

Five people, including a police officer, died in the storm on the Capitol after a Trump rally. Trump is accused of inciting the mob. The leader of the Proud Boys, Henry “Enrique” Tarrio, had been ordered by a court to leave Washington before the meeting. Police arrested him after arriving in the US capital on a warrant for property damage in a previous demonstration against him by Trump supporters. He must stay out of Washington until his next hearing on June 8.

During the election campaign, Trump aroused enthusiasm in the right-wing spectrum with statements about the “Proud Boys”. In a TV debate with ultimately victorious challenger Joe Biden, Trump had refused to clearly condemn right-wing groups. At that moment he said, “Proud guys – wait a minute and be ready.”

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