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

News Roundup for July 21, 2011

By Hatewatch Staff on July 21, 2011 - 1:48 pm, Posted in Anti-LGBT, Hate Crime, White Supremacist

White supremacist Mark Anthony Stroman was executed Wednesday evening for his post-9/11 revenge spree. That spree left two South Asian men dead and one Bangladeshi man wounded in acts of revenge for the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Police in Colorado Springs, Colo., are investigating the second possible anti-gay hate crime in a month. Two homeless men were reportedly stabbed as their assailants made anti-gay slurs. This follows an earlier incident in which at least one man was beaten because he was thought to be gay.

Two New Mexico men have pled guilty to federal hate crime charges for their part in the branding of a Navajo man. Paul Beebe, 27, and Jesse Sanford, 25, admitted to drawing sexually and racially offensive pictures on 22-year-old Vincent Kee, and then branding him with a swastika. Kee reportedly has fetal alcohol syndrome and was considered an easy target. Beebe and Sanford will reportedly receive up to 8 ½ years in prison for the crime.

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Longtime Militiaman Drew Rayner Facing Trial for Mail Fraud

By Heidi Beirich on July 21, 2011 - 12:29 pm, Posted in Militias

NOTE: HateWatch has learned that Drew Allen Rayner has prominent ties to the antigovernment “sovereign citizen” movement. In April 2010, Rayner was one several sovereign citizens who signed a letter sent to all 50 governors demanding they vacate their offices, or else. The Guardians for the free Republics (GFR), a group which included the vanguard of the sovereign citizen movement, organized the letter campaign. Another sovereign citizen who signed the letters was James Timothy Turner, a sovereign guru who heads the Republic for the united States of America (RUSA) – one of the largest and most ambitious sovereign groups active in the United States.

A major figure in the antigovernment militia movement for the past two decades has been indicted for mail fraud in Mississippi. Prosecutors allege that Drew Allen Rayner, 72, gave a fake promissory note to the town of Poplarville to pay a court-ordered fine.

Rayner, who is set to go to trial on Oct. 3, faces up to 55 years in prison and a $500,000 fine.

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U.S. Senator Catches Anti-Gay Testifier Misrepresenting Study

By Robert Steinback on July 20, 2011 - 8:16 pm, Posted in Anti-LGBT

A representative of one of the nation’s largest organizations opposed to same-sex marriage learned, as the U.S. Senate and the entire nation watched, to be careful what studies you cite – because someone might actually read them.

U.S. Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota caught Thomas Minnery, vice president of government and public policy for Focus on the Family, blatantly mischaracterizing a government study on the benefits to children of being raised by two married parents as referring to opposite-sex parents, when the report itself drew no such distinction. It was the latest in a relentless campaign of misrepresentations, half-truths and outright lies in recent years that have defined anti-gay Christian right organizations intent on opposing equal rights and common dignity for LGBT people.

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Judge Ignores ‘Martian law,’ Tosses ‘Sovereign Citizen’ Into Slammer

By Robert Steinback on July 20, 2011 - 2:54 pm, Posted in Sovereign Citizens

This Georgia judge had heard just about enough nonsense from a “sovereign citizen” charged in a scheme to steal a house.

Rockdale County Superior Court Judge David Irwin repeatedly advised Akeem Kwame – a self-described “Moorish national” charged with mortgage fraud for falsely claiming ownership of a house in Conyers, Ga. – to get a lawyer or accept a public defender.

And Kwame repeatedly rejected that advice. It was time for trial.

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News Round Up for July 20, 2011

By Hatewatch Staff on July 20, 2011 - 2:35 pm, Posted in Klan, Sovereign Citizens, White Supremacist

One of the prime suspects in the murder of civil rights activists in the 1960s died on Wednesday. Richard Willis, a former Philadelphia, Miss., police officer, was long seen as part of the group of Klansmen involved in the killing of civil rights activists James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner in 1964. The incident spawned a massive FBI investigation and the indictment of nearly 18 men on federal conspiracy charges.

Four Texas men connected to a white supremacist prison gang have been arrested for a brutal home invasion. Jason Skolaski, 34, Shannon Michael Kasper, 20, Ned Alan Smith, 42, and his 15-year old son broke into the house of a San Jacinto County couple, stole $300, and then cut off the finger of one of the residents with a pair of bolt cutters before fleeing. The three adult suspects are believed to be part of the white supremacist Aryan Brotherhood of Texas.

A New Jersey woman was arrested for illegally occupying a foreclosed house and committing forgery. Jolanda S. Bordley-Jackson EL, 41, is accused of moving into a foreclosed home in Mullica Township, filing a fraudulent deed claiming ownership of the house, and putting the utilities in her name while changing the locks of the house. Police say the woman is a member of the Moorish Science Temple of America, some of whose members hold the beliefs of the sovereign citizen movement.

April Gaede Claims Daughters’ Interviews are a Money-Making Scam

By Ryan Lenz on July 20, 2011 - 1:53 pm, Posted in Neo-Nazi

April Gaede responded to her twin daughters Lynx and Lamb announcing they had left the movement with a theory: They’re scamming the Jews, just as she taught them. “The girls are using the Jews [sic] media to make bank as usual. If they had done anything else they would not have gotten any attention,” Gaede said on Facebook earlier this week. “For a money making scheme I guess I can’t blame them too much.”

The message came a day after her two daughters granted an exclusive interview to The Daily on Sunday in which they announced they had renounced the racist world in which they were raised in favor of “a place of love and light.” “We should have been pushed toward something a little more mainstream and easier for us to handle than being front-men for a belief system that we didn’t completely understand,” Lynx said in the interview.

Given their role as what one publication called the “new face of hate,” the announcement sent shock waves through the racist right and drew out many white nationalist and nativist figures eager to respond. Some offered a defense of the Gaede twins, but overwhelmingly the trend was to comfort their mother, April Gaede. Even William Pierce, an author and chief ideologue behind the once powerful neo-Nazi National Alliance, made concessions to practice his beliefs, one commenter said. “Pierce had a Jew publish his books too… Can’t blame [Lynx and Lamb] too much,” a user named Per Olsson said. (Pierce is most infamous for publishing The Turner Diaries, a race war novel that inspired Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh.) ( continue to full post… )

Internet Messages Detail ‘Nazi Jihadist’s’ Radicalization

By Leah Nelson on July 19, 2011 - 4:13 pm, Posted in Extremist Crime

A Pennsylvania man who was indicted Thursday for allegedly using the Internet to encourage Islamic fundamentalists to launch terror attacks against U.S. targets has a long history of extremism and joined a neo-Nazi group in 2003.

Emerson Begolly, 22, of New Bethlehem, Pa., was about 14 when he first contacted the National Socialist Movement (NSM), America’s largest neo-Nazi group, Hatewatch has learned.

Begolly was arrested on January 4 after he bit two FBI agents who approached him to serve search warrants as he sat alone in the front seat of a car parked at a Burger King. When the agents opened the door and identified themselves, he screamed and reached for his pocket, then bit the agents’ hands, drawing blood. He was found to have a 9 mm Makarov handgun with the safety off and two fully loaded magazines in his pocket.

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News Roundup for July 19, 2011

By Hatewatch Staff on July 19, 2011 - 1:25 pm, Posted in Hate Crime, Neo-Nazi, Sovereign Citizens

A former member of the white supremacist Aryan Circle prison gang pleaded guilty for his part in a 2008 murder. George Buford Scott pleaded to a single assault charge in return for testimony against a fellow gang member, Billy Wayne Haynes, in the murder of Rey Valdez in 2008. Scott was released for time served on a two-year sentence, while Haynes received life in prison.

Authorities in Asheville, N.C. are looking for suspects in a possible hate crime. Luke Hankins claims that a group of teenagers began to shout gay slurs at him and followed him to his car before one teen hit him, causing three factures in his face. Police are treating the incident a hate crime; however, state law does not include sexual orientation as a consideration for a hate crime.

A Washington couple connected to the sovereign citizen movement has been charged for fraudulently attempting to collect $320,600 in tax refunds. Prosecutors accuse Raymond Leo and Ute Christine Jarlik-Bell of requesting large refunds from the IRS through fraudulent means. Previously, the couple had participated in the “Sovereign Assemblies” movement that promoted sham business accounts to conceal income from the IRS.

Two Arkansas men charged with a hate crime for a cross burning pleaded guilty today. Tony Branscum, 25, and James Bradley Branscum, 23, confessed that they planned to burn a cross in the yard of an African-American man, and carried it out with a third defendant. The pair face up to 10 years in prison for the crime.

Neo-Nazi Twins Drop Racism for Love and Marijuana

By Ryan Lenz on July 18, 2011 - 3:44 pm, Posted in Racist Music

Lynx and Lamb Gaede were twin pop sensations for all the wrong reasons. Their songs dealt with overt white nationalist themes, and even their band – Prussian Blue – was a reference to the distinctive color of Zyclon B residue in the Nazi gas chambers. In one of the most infamous photos from their childhood, the twins posed wearing white T-shirts with a smiley face adorned with Hitler’s toothbrush mustache and neatly parted, jet-black hair.

That’s all over, the girls say now. In an exclusive interview with The Daily, Lynx and Lamb – once described as the “new face of hate” – say they’ve abandoned the racism hoisted on them by their mother April Gaede and instead settled into “a place of love and light.”

“I’m glad we were in the band,” Lynx said. “But I think we should have been pushed toward something a little more mainstream and easier for us to handle than being front-men for a belief system that we didn’t completely understand.” Lamb put their transformation more bluntly. “I’m not a white nationalist anymore.” ( continue to full post… )

News Roundup for July 18, 2011

By Hatewatch Staff on July 18, 2011 - 2:24 pm, Posted in Hate Crime, Militias, White Supremacist

A Texas white supremacist responsible for an anti-Muslim shooting spree faces execution on Wednesday. Mark Stroman, 41, is currently on death row for a series of revenge attacks in the days after the 9/11 terror attacks that killed two South Asian men and wounded another. The surviving victim, a Bangladeshi Muslim, is asking for Storman’s sentence to be commuted to life in prison.

One of the defendants convicted for the murder of an Arizona man and his daughter has been sentenced to life in prison. Albert Gaxiola, along with two others, entered the home of Junior Flores pretending to be Border Patrol agents and shot Flores, his wife (who survived), and their daughter Brisenia. Two of the defendants have received the death penalty, but the jury was unable to reach a unanimous decision on a death sentence for Gaxiola.

A member of the Hutaree Militia has been deemed unfit for trial due to mental problems. Jacob Ward, 34, has been indicted, along with nine others, for an antigovernment plot to kill police officers. Judge Victoria Roberts stated that Ward suffers from a mental defect, and is unable to understand the charges he faces.

The hunt for a militia leader has been temporarily halted after the suspect disappeared into the Montana woods. David Burgert, 47, a former Marine and the leader of the Project 7 militia was released in 2010 after eight years in prison for illegal firearms possession. Last June, Burgert led law enforcement on a chase, before shooting at the officers and fleeing into the woods. Local authorities plan to continue the search when new leads arise.

Police in Cherry Hill, N.J., have upgraded charges over a series of vandalisms against local Christian sites to a hate crime. In the course of a week, six cases of vandalism have taken place against Christian shrines, including one instance in which more than 30 statues were damaged at a church. Police are still searching for the suspect.