Oath Keepers Founder is among 10 others charged with Seditious Conspiracy in Jan. 6 Capitol Assault

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Along with 10 other members of Oath Keepers, the founder of the right-wing militia group Oath Keepers was charged with seditious conspiracy for their alleged involvement in the Capitol attack, the Department of Justice. These are the first sedition charges related to the January 6 insurrection, and come as a major development following a year-long investigation.

Elmer Stewart Rhodes III (Oath Keepers) was taken into custody in Granbury, Texas on Thursday afternoon. He is expected to appear in court Friday afternoon.

Edward Vallejo (63), of Phoenix, Arizona was also indicted. He was accused of co-ordinating teams for the Oath Keepers.

They, along with the nine others now facing sedition charges, are alleged to have plotted “to oppose by force the lawful transfer of presidential power”According to a Department of Justice statement, they recruited, trained, and organized members for the Capitol Assault. They also brought weapons and supplies to Washington D.C. the day of certification.

According to some reports, Rhodes may have started coordinating travel to D.C. around January 6, as well as December 2020.

While previous charges and convictions surrounding the Capitol assault were limited to rioters’ actions on Jan. 6, the latest sedition charges relate to the alleged conspiracy leading up to the event, and is a critical first step in making the case that some events of the riot were planned, and did not occur in the heat of the moment.  

These are also the first charges Rhodes and Vallejo face in relation to the Capitol riots, while the rest of those named in the latest sedition charges also face earlier charges for their alleged roles on Jan. 6.

According to the Oath Keepers, they are among approximately twenty-six members or affiliates who have been charged with their involvement in the riots. CBS News.

The Department of Justice’s Attorney General Merrick Garland has previously vowed to hold accountable those responsible for the riots, “whether they were present that day or were otherwise criminally responsible for the assault on our democracy.”

Vallejo’s lawyer stated that he intended to enter a not guilty plea. Rhodes, however, has previously said that he has always stood on the right side.

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