The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

Yet Another White Nationalist Leader Felled by Child-Sex Charges

By Robert Steinback on July 15, 2011 - 4:35 pm, Posted in White Supremacist

Not that Klansmen and their ilk should ever be associated with negative stereotyping, mind you – but it does seem that the type of man who rises to leadership positions in the white nationalist universe has a peculiar knack for becoming entangled in child-sex scandals.

The latest is Neal Ray Schmidt, described by federal investigators as a former grand dragon of the Missouri chapter of the Ku Klux Klan. Schmidt was sentenced Wednesday to 20 years in prison after admitting he drove 600 miles to have sex with who he believed were two 14-year-old girls he had met online – but who were, in fact, undercover police officers.

Schmidt was arrested June 21, 2010, in McDonough, Ga., after traveling from his home in St. Louis, a trip that culminated a four-month investigation during which Schmidt gradually cultivated an online relationship with the “girls.” He was arrested in the parking lot of a motel where he was supposed to meet the girls, and was carrying several guns, Klan paraphernalia and an assortment of sex toys.  He had earlier E-mailed explicit videos of himself as well as images and videos of child pornography “in an effort to groom the girls for an eventual sexual encounter,” according to a release issued by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia.

Schmidt, who also went by the alias Raymond “German” Owens,  subsequently was also charged with molesting his own granddaughter in Missouri and arranging a sexual encounter with an underage girl in Florida, according to the release.

Schmidt’s wife Pamela told investigators that he was active in an unspecified Missouri Klan chapter from the early 1980s to the early ’90s, and often attended Klan-related rallies in Harrison, Ark. Investigators found Nazi paraphernalia and over 60 legal firearms at the Schmidt home.

This case takes its place the gallery of sex scandals involving men who believed, by the virtue of their race alone, they deserved to run the world.

In December 2006, Matthew Downing, the 25-year-old organizer for the neo-Nazi National Vanguard in Boston, was charged with statutory rape after coercing a 14-year-old girl to perform oral sex on him. Two weeks later, Kevin Alfred Strom, 50, the leader of the parent National Vanguard group and considered one of the leading “intellectuals” of the white supremacist movement, was charged with possessing child pornography and enticing a 10-year-old girl to have sex. Strom in 2008 beat the latter charge when the judge ruled that while there was “overwhelming evidence [Strom] was sexually drawn to this child,” he never actually tried to have sex with her. Strom did plead guilty to a charge of possessing child pornography and was sentenced to 23 months in prison.

The same month Strom was arrested, the imperial wizard of Maryland’s World Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, Gordon Creal Young, 40, was arrested and charged with seven criminal counts, including twice attempting to force a 15-year-old girl to perform oral sex on him. The indictment also accused him of telling the girl she would need to strip before being inducted into the Klan, to prove she was free of “imperfections.” Young was acquitted in July 2007, apparently due in part to unpersuasive testimony from the alleged victim.

In 2006, Joe Fields, once the head of the racist Nationalist Forum, became embroiled in a vitriolic internecine white nationalist controversy over allegations that in California in 1996, he had pleaded guilty to four misdemeanor counts of annoying a child under 18, after allegedly attempting to solicit underage girls to do a “porn movie,” though police presumed the movie offer to be a ruse. The ideological catfight  boiled over in October 2006 when white nationalist attorney Edgar Steele – who would later be convicted of attempting to have his own wife murdered – blasted Fields as “a self-confessed child molester” and “liar” who deserved no place in the movement. “Joe pled, did some hard time and then served extended probation,” Steele wrote. Fields shot back, claiming his “no contest” plea was a pragmatic decision, and pointing out that his “hard time” amounted to 90 days in the county lock-up. Fields accused unnamed Jews of trumping up “false charges” to ruin his character.

Of Fields and Strom, Steele – ironically destined to become a convicted felon himself – wrote, “We do not need this sort of role model in the [white nationalist] movement. … It is our responsibility to clean up our own act and condemn those among us who break the law, particularly when violations so thoroughly trash the fundamental principles upon which we stand.”

  • Sheldon L. McCormick

    Extremism, be it the white supremacist type or leftist or other spectrum, is a big smoke screen. For the sake of hating others for their skin color, their religion or other traits that were not of their making, extremists hype up their members, fill them with a sense of superiority, draw on their violent capacities, get them to commit violence and laud them as heroes. When the radical offenders get them in the criminal justice system, this nonsense is enforced, but reality sets in. The extremists, in the end, face the brutal consequences of jail, prison, its horrors and one’s own conscience over harming or killing people in the name of a lie, ignorance and illusion.

  • Sam Molloy

    I’m pretty sure the correlation has something to do with wanting to control other people. Basically people with that attitude are the only ones that need to be controlled.

  • Sam Damnit

    This is not at all surprising. Nazis and pedophiles are both dangerous predators, and are both profoundly damaged and dangerous people. I am certain that the number of pedophile nazis is larger than we know.

  • jwd

    WN is a social club for pedophiles, drug addicts,criminals and perverts who prey on society. Thank God for laws, courts and the SPLC.

  • A walkaway

    I believe that we’re seeing the result of a top-down autocratic and authoritarian hierarchal system. I’ve talked with too many walkaway women who reported being raped as little girls. Their stories all are similar (and some had proof – like a pregnancy), and all experienced strong coercion to not report the crime or get help. In fact, a common experience was being labeled a “Jezebel” if they did.

    The reason why these people get caught is IMO their ideology. I would bet that they’re attacking kids who are outside their organization/network or peripherally connected. The fundamentalists/dominionists? They attack their own and count on the structure to protect them.

  • Sheldon L. McCormick

    The only thing new about trumpeting Neo-Nazi or Klan virtues and their claims as “grand giants” in American morality is nothing new. The D.C. Stevenson affair in Indiana in the 1920s, in which the then grand dragon kidnapped,raped and, in a mad dog, alcoholic rage, chewed up a young white woman, which brought about not only the lady’s suicide, but the downfall of the Ku Klux Klan’s national movement from five million members to a few 100,000. Human nature and selfish, perverted or greed-filled financial gain will always minimize white supremacist groups, or for that matter extremist groups in general, when such is limited by law enforcement efforts. Aside from the few fanatical terrorists among them, who usually get drugged, boozed or riled to hysterical fury in order to commit racial violence, guys like Fields and Steel will not be taken seriously by the public at large. Racism and the efforts to raise it to prominence in today’s America, by drawing younger people with promises of white nationalist glory in exchange for Internet and/or underage sex, is proof of its failures.

  • Concerned Citizen

    Hypocrisy is the word of the day and that’s all folks!

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    I think some of these people, like rabidly anti-gay religious leaders, believe that if they rail against all kinds of sexual “deviance”, nobody will suspect them of practicing it themselves. Perhaps they also feel this is a way of fighting those urges.

  • Rabbi Dov Coder

    For all their blathering of the medacious lies about the Jewish Talmud supposedly endorsing child sex, the white supremacists seem to be embroiled in the very same thing on a regular basis. Why is that? It’s like evangelist Jimmy Swaggert blasting people about sexual immorality in his sermons, then being found with a hooker in a motel room. They try to obfuscate their own sins by accusing their favorite “scapegoat” of the very thing they themselves are guilty of.

  • Matthew Bright

    I followed the link to the Sex, Lies and White Supremacy and saw these references to Klansmen with black transvestites and skinheads trying to hook up with Latino males.

    While the SPLC isn’t really known for laughs, guilty pleasures and salaciousness, you might consider going into these stories a bit more. Enquiring minds want to know.

  • Reynardine

    People with strong “social dominance orientation” believe that “weakness” itself is the ultimate sin, and the “strong” are supposed to punish the “weak” by preying on them. This seems a highly likely mindset for the kind of people who join these movements and still moreso for the men who attain pre-eminence in them.

  • Shadow Wolf

    Without further ado, I would certainly sayeth that within the despicable WN movement, there appears to be an influx in perversity of sorts–mainly in pedophilia. Even more so, in this *SUPREME* aryan movement of theirs, than any other so called “hate groups” documented herein.

    Sad but woefully true.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    Just what is it with these WN leaders and pedophilia?