The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.
An antigovernment extremist who espoused killing police officers, judges and using napalm to burn down a county courthouse has been arrested in Montana after buying a fully automatic shotgun during six-month FBI sting.
William Krisstofer Wolf, 52, who broadcast his extremist views on a weekly webcast called “The Montana Republic,” was arrested Wednesday by FBI agents in Livingston, Mont., after paying $725 and taking possession of a sawed-off, fully automatic Russian Saiga-12 shotgun capable of shooting 10 rounds in two seconds, court documents say. His arrest came without incident.
The case will be presented to a federal grand jury for indictment while West remains in jail without bond on a charge of possession an illegal fully automatic machine gun.
Wolf allegedly expressed a desire to buy the illegal gun during a series of meetings he had, beginning last November, with an FBI informant who introduced Wolf to an undercover FBI agent, the documents say. It’s likely those conversations were secretly recorded by the FBI, although that’s not specifically detailed in public records.
During those meetings, Wolf also discussed building a “blowtorch gun” with a range up to 150 feet “for the purpose of protection against law enforcement officers wearing body armor.”
The court documents also say Wolf discussed using his blowtorch gun to destroy a “BearCAT” armored vehicle recently acquired by the Bozeman Police Department for use in SWAT operations. He allegedly said the most-effective way of destroying the police armored vehicle “would be cooking it from the inside.”
As the FBI continued monitoring West’s activities, agents learned that possession of the type of flamethrower described by Wolf wouldn’t violate federal law, the court documents disclose. But during those discussions, they say, Wolf also expressed his desire to acquire the Russian-made fully automatic shotgun.
Wolf began broadcasting “The Montana Republic” in November 2013 “to bring like-minded Patriots from across the country” together to discuss ways to counter local, state and federal officials who Patriots consider to be “overstepping on constitutional rights,” the documents say.
In several of his webcasts, West talked about “taking out bridges or power grids and seizing law enforcement vehicles and weapons,” they say.
“Over the next 12 months, Wolf repeatedly espoused his contempt for local judges, law enforcement, the county attorney, city and county commissioners and agents and agencies of the federal government,” the documents say.
When a “sovereign citizen” was arrested in Montana, Wolf urged his fellow Patriots to make citizen’s arrests of judges involved in the case and “stated his intention to use a means of force if necessary.”
Wolf advocated targeting police officers suspected of violating their oaths of office — comparing “shooting law enforcement officers to gopher hunting,” the documents allege.
Last October, in another broadcast, Wolf said federal judges who overturned gay marriage bans also “are now viable targets because they violated the Constitution.”
“As it sits folks, please understand, I firmly believe that all agents of the government, all judiciary, and all police officers are targets,” he said on the broadcast.
At a Patriots “committee of safety” meeting that Wolf hosted in late January, he discussed destroying the Gallatin County Courthouse in Bozeman, Mont. “My preferred method, I’m serious … would be to drop 500 pounds of napalm through the roof of the courthouse and burn it to the ground and roast some marshmallows on it.”
“I don’t believe in doing anything that’s not extreme and right now, wiping that place out would be my extreme movement and then my next [question] would be, ‘OK, which county, city building is going to be next?’”
When someone in the group urged West to exercise restraint and caution, the court documents say, he responded that if “they wanted to put him in jail, they had better bring a coroner and several body bags.”
The oft-delayed Arizona trial of erstwhile Minuteman leader Chris Simcox on child-molestation charges has blown up once again, thanks primarily to Simcox’s insistence on having the right to personally cross-examine his alleged victims — two young girls aged 7 and 8.
Simcox had previously raised the possibility that this might occur when he announced that he intended to represent himself at his trial, something he has a constitutional right to do. However, Maricopa County prosecutor Yigael Cohen requested before the trial began that Superior Court Judge Jose Padilla require that Simcox’s two “advisory” attorneys question the girls, one of whom is Simcox’s daughter.
Now, according to a report by Stephen Lemons of the Phoenix New Times, Judge Padilla has conceded to Simcox’s counter-argument — namely, that he should be permitted to directly cross-examine the two girls because doing so is “a crucial cornerstone of his desire to present his best defense.” Padilla ruled in a hearing Thursday afternoon that Simcox would be allowed to question the girls, who were 5 and 6 years old when the crimes allegedly occurred.
But Padilla refused to remove himself from the trial, which Simcox had also requested.
According to The Associated Press, prosecutors plan to immediately file an appeal of Padilla’s ruling, meaning the trial — which had already been delayed nine times since Simcox’s arrest in July 2013 — is likely to last into the summer. Lemons reported that deputy county attorney Kelli Luther argued strenuously against allowing Simcox to “control his own victims in the courtroom,” pointing to U.S. Supreme Court and federal appellate court rulings allowing for special accommodations to be made in similar instances.
However, Padilla said he would need evidence that the children are traumatized at the prospect of being interrogated by their alleged molester, and brushed aside letters from the girls’ mothers attesting to that effect: “With all due respect,” he said, “[the mothers] are simply not qualified to make that assessment.”
In the filing made this week, Simcox argues that the children “were never subjected to … harm in the first place,” so the county attorney is “asking the court to find the defendant guilty … before the trial has even begun.”
Simcox was originally charged with also molesting a third little girl, whom Simcox allegedly bribed with candy to expose her genitals, but those charges were dropped after the grand jury chose not to indict him in that case. However, that girl is expected to be a prosecution witness as well.
Simcox’s trial was most recently scheduled to begin March 24. However, when attorneys gathered in Padilla’s courtroom that day, they were informed that Simcox was in the hospital, for reasons that could not be disclosed under medical-privacy laws, and would be there for a week. At a pretrial conference on Thursday, Judge Padilla scheduled jury selection to begin on April 6.
But if the prosecutors proceed to take the ruling on the girls’ testimony to an appeals court, that schedule seems unlikely at best.
These developments are the latest in a long and twisted road to trial for Simcox, who previously had suggested he would present a “grand conspiracy” defense that he had been targeted for prosecution, and the evidence against him invented, because of his prominent role as a leader and co-founder of the nativist extremism group called the Minutemen. The judge later informed him that such a defense would not be allowed.
At the height of the border vigilante movement, Simcox was president of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, a nationwide, anti-immigration organization that led armed “citizen border patrols” in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas, along with a smattering of states on the Canadian border where Minutemen had deployed to protect America from northern invaders. Never modest, the cigar-chomping Simcox was a hyper and relentless self-aggrandizer who came across with the smug egotism that quickly earned him the nickname “The Little Prince.”
He was known for over-the-top claims, like his repeated assertion that he had seen Chinese Red Army men at the Mexican border, preparing to attack the U.S. Nevertheless, he was featured repeatedly on Lou Dobbs’ CNN show and a plethora of shows on Fox News, where he was treated as a serious critic of immigration policy.
But even then, there were allegations of sexual abuse. As the SPLC reported in 2005, Simcox was accused by his first wife of molesting another daughter when she was a teenager, although no complaint was ever made to police. His second wife also sought custody of their teenage son because, she said, Simcox had become violent and unpredictable. His third wife — the mother of his current accuser — took out a restraining order against Simcox in 2010 when she divorced him.
Right Wing Watch: Ted Nugent goes on unhinged rant about shooting immigrants, ‘crushing’ Democrats, putting Hillary in jail.
Idaho Statesman: GOP leader from Idaho Falls warn of Muslims ‘inflitrating’ the state so they can ‘rise up and kill’.
Crooks and Liars: Wisconsin Lutheran pastor resigns after sending rape threat email to local blogger.
WNEM-TV (Saginaw, MI): Mid-Michigan couple in militia group accused of stealing money, stockpiling weapons.
Raw Story: Georgia florist says she will serve adulterers, but not gay people, since that’s ‘a different kind of sin.’
Talking Points Memo: Mike Huckabee warns that gay-rights movement won’t stop ‘until there are no more churches.’
Media Matters: Does MSNBC know that it’s giving a platform to a virulent anti-LGBT hate group?
Three alleged members of the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan who are current and former Florida Department of Corrections employees were arrested today on charges they plotted to kill a former black inmate.
Thomas Jordan Driver, 25, David Elliot Moran, 47, and Charles Thomas Newcomb, 42, were all arrested on one state count of conspiracy to commit murder, Florida State Attorney General Pam Bondi said in a prepared statement.
Driver and Moran worked at the Department of Corrections Reception and Medical Center in Lake Butler at the time of their arrest, and Newcomb is a former employee of the state corrections department, said Whitney Ray, a spokesman for the attorney general’s office.
“The defendants plotted the murder as retaliation for a fight between the inmate, who is African American, and Driver,” the statement from the attorney general’s office said.
The attorney general’s office identified the group the men allegedly belonged to as the Traditional American Knights of the KKK. But there is no such known group, and the authorities almost certainly meant the Traditionalist American Knights of the KKK, which is based in Potosi, Mo., and last year had a second chapter in Prattville, Ala. A year earlier, it listed seven chapters, the Missouri headquarters and another six in Texas. The group is not known to have a Florida chapter.
The Traditionalist American Knights has gotten much media attention in the last year for distributing propaganda pamphlets. But it received far more scrutiny after its national leader, Frank Ancona, sent out pamphlets threatening to use “lethal force” against protesters in Ferguson, Mo., if any of his members who went there were threatened.
Inside the tempestuous Klan world, Ancona is also known for the attacks on him by other Klan leaders, who accuse him of being secretly Jewish.
The Florida case is the latest instance of KKK members holding positions of authority in law enforcement and the criminal justice system in Florida and elsewhere. Although such cases were once fairly common, they are very unusual in recent years.
There have been a number of cases over the years of racist prison guards, a few of whom were Klan members.
Last summer, two officers with the Fruitland Park, Fla., police department were identified as Klan members. One of them was the deputy chief. One resigned and the other was fired, as prosecutors quickly reviewed their prior criminal cases for bias. There has been some dispute as to whether or not they really were Klansmen.
In 2009, the Nebraska Supreme Court upheld the 2006 firing of a State Patrol trooper who claimed he had a 1st Amendment right to belong to the Knights Party, another name for the Arkansas-based Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.
The state’s high court said the firing of trooper Robert Henderson was justified because he voluntarily associated with an organization that uses violence and terror to oppose the state’s founding principles of equality and tolerance.
Henderson, a trooper for 18 years, was dismissed in 2006 after he admitted that, two years earlier, he had joined Knights Party.
“One cannot simultaneously wear the badge of the Nebraska State Patrol and the robe of a Klansman without degrading what that badge represents when worn by any officer,” Justice John Gerrard wrote.
In the new Florida case, court documents associate with the arrests have not been unsealed, so other details of the case are not yet publicly available. The case will be prosecuted in Florida’s Columbia County, officials said.
Following on the heels of a significant white nationalist conference in St. Petersburg, Russia, this past weekend, another overseas event featuring European, Russian and American racists is set to take place in Belgium next month. On April 18, the far-right Flemish student movement Nationalistische Studentenvereniging (Nationalist Student Union), along with the white nationalist publishing house Arktos, has organized a colloquium titled “Europe, Beyond the West.”
The event, just the latest example of the ongoing international bridge-building on the radical right, is to take place at Antwerp University’s Flanders campus.
Here is a rundown of the extremist speakers scheduled to address the gathering:
Alexandr Gelyevich Dugin is a Russian political scientist and fascist who supports a Eurasian empire made up of Russia and former Soviet republics such as the Ukraine and set against “North Atlantic interests.” Dugin has close ties to the Kremlin and serves as an adviser to Sergei Naryshkin, speaker of the Duma, the Russian parliament. He has set up nationalist political parties including the National Bolshevik Party, National Bolshevik Front and the Eurasia Party. During this year’s conflict in the Ukraine and Crimea, Dugin was in regular contact with pro-Russian separatist insurgents. In 2014, he was removed from his teaching position at Moscow State University, reportedly for his extremist views. Dugin is regular speaker at far-right gatherings across Europe.
Manuel Ochsenreiter is editor-in-chief of the German monthly news magazine ZUERST! (meaning “first”), which is “committed to the life and survival interests of the German people and the precious heritage of our European culture.” The magazine describes other media as controlled by “foreign interests.” According to The Interpreter, an English-language website specializing in Russian news, ZUERST! burnishes “the image of the Third Reich in popular culture” and opposes “what it regards as the humiliating legacy of denazification.” Just after the magazine began publishing in 2010, workers for its distributor, Bauer Media, threatened to strike, calling it a pro-Nazi magazine. Bauer dropped the publication. Ochsenreiter also is an on-air correspondent for the conspiracy-minded television channel, Russia Today. He is close to Alexandr Dugin and supports Russian interests in the Ukraine. He recently gave an interview to Iran’s Press TV, a blatantly anti-Semitic news outlet that often gives a platform for American anti-Semites to express their views.
John Morgan is the American editor-in-chief of Arktos Media, a co-sponsor of the colloquium. Morgan, a supporter of extremist political parties in Europe, says the publishing outfit is named to evoke “ancient European tradition” and “northernness.” Arktos publishes a fully catalog of radical books by prominent fascists, including Dugin, as well as handbooks on the Identitaire movement’s racist and anti-Muslim ideology. Some of Arktos’ works are particularly radical. Guillaume Faye and the Battle for Europe is a compilation of postings from American neo-Nazi websites including Vanguard News Network and National Vanguard. The publishing house also sells a translated version of The Culture of Critique, written by American anti-Semite Kevin MacDonald. Arktos moved to Budapest from the India in 2014 and will be celebrating its fifth anniversary in May. Morgan has been published on the American racist website Counter-Currents and is often found speaking on the racist circuit in the United States. Since his move from India to Eastern Europe, Morgan has sought to build relationships with European radicals across the continent. While he may not yet be a known name in European far-right circles like Dugin and Ochsenreiter, Morgan is close to joining them.
Salon: How right-wing bigots managed to invent a white-supremacist Jesus, battling under a banner of ‘religious freedom.’
Talking Points Memo: Yelp users troll owners of Indiana pizzeria who vow not to cater same-sex weddings.
Times Union (Albany, NY): Reputed Klansman facing federal charges in alleged anti-Muslim X-ray plot asks judge to dismiss charges.
WWSB-TV (Sarasota, FL): Bradenton restaurant receives disturbing message from self-proclaimed KKK member.
Crooks and Liars: Ex-Rep. Michelle Bachmann compares President Obama to deranged Germanwings pilot for negotiations with Iran.
Raw Story: Florida chef fires back at KKK threats over his interracial marriage, describes caller as a ‘coward.’
Daily Journal (Park Hill, MO): Appeals court denies KKK group’s effort to overturn pamphlet-distribution ban.
Los Angeles Times: Cliven Bundy and his posse tackle the U.S. government again, this time with official help.
MassLive: Scott Lively announces he’s expanding his anti-LGBT operations to Southern California.
Last week, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) released a report on “Stormfront Radio,” a racist and anti-Semitic broadcast that can be heard in the United States and on a satellite feed in Europe. Aired by the anti-Semitic Rense Radio Network, the two-hour show is hosted by Stormfront founder Don Black, a longtime white supremacist, and features a host of his likeminded racist allies.
Each hour of the show starts with a two-minute news broadcast, usually read by Bob Agnew of Salem Radio Network (SRN). The news segment, which provides an unearned air of legitimacy to Don Black’s hate-filled broadcasts, is produced by Salem Media Group, one of the largest and most successful Christian-based radio content providers in the country. Black has said SRN’s news makes his program sound “like a real radio show.”
But there’s a problem for Black. And Jeff Rense, who runs Rense Radio Network. SRN has not sanctioned them to run their programming.
Tom Tradup, SRN’s vice president of news and talk programming, is very upset with the situation. Tradup said in a voicemail left with the SPLC that the network knew “nothing” about this and “had not given them permission” to run the news feed. Tradup told the SPLC that Stormfront “kidnapped our news” and “we want nothing to do with them.” According to Tradup, the issue has been referred to SRN’s legal department, which plans to address the matter with the Rense Radio Network.
The use of SRN news on Stormfront radio is all the more abhorrent because Black’s program has viciously attacked SRN syndicated talk show host Michael Medved. Don Advo, who often co-hosts on “Stormfront Radio,” once accused Medved on air of being a racist Jew who was pro-choice to “cull the goyim herd” of white babies.
Attempts to contact Don Black and Jeff Rense were not responded to.
Two months after a representative for PayPal requested a list of radical right groups and individuals using its services to raise money from Hatewatch, the company has not moved to restrict the groups’ usage of the service to promote racism. That stands in great contrast to other web-based services such as Spotify and iTunes that have moved swiftly to drop hate content once notified.
PayPal’s own “acceptable use policy,” which governs the use of its services, prohibits “use [of] the PayPal service for activities that … relate to transactions involving items that promote hate, violence, [or] racial intolerance.”
Yet, as the Washington Post reported last month, repeated requests for PayPal to enforce its own guidelines have been met with obstinacy, if acknowledged at all. This effectively means that PayPal, the largest online payment system, has given a tacit blessing for white supremacists to use their services as an unofficial banking system.
Federal civil rights charges are pending against a former student at the University of Mississippi who is accused of hanging a noose and Confederate flag on a statue of James Meredith, the first black student to attend Ole Miss.
Graeme Phillip Harris, 20, of Alpharetta, Ga., was arrested on Friday by deputy U.S. marshals, two days after being indicted by a federal grand jury in northern Mississippi. He was released on an unsecured $10,000 bond after an initial court appearance.
Salon: Robert Jeffress tells Liberty University students that 9/11 terrorist attacks were God’s punishment for abortion.
Right Wing Watch: Glenn Beck warns that criticism of Indiana’s ‘religious freedom’ law will lead to concentration camps.
New York Daily News: Plainclothes NYPD officer caught on video trying to humiliate Uber driver for being an immigrant.
WFAA-TV (Dallas, TX): Dallas mayoral candidate arrested, charged with tagging LGBT community with ‘666’ graffiti.
Access ADL: White supremacists stage protests across the nation against purported ‘white genocide.’
KRGV-TV (Rio Grande Valley, TX): Onetime border militiaman Kevin Massey seeks dismissal of felony gun-possession charges.
Think Progress: Arkansas could soon become nation’s most anti-LGBT state if governor signs ‘religious freedom’ bill.