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Head of Oath Keepers Among 11 Charged with Seditious Conspiracy over Jan. 6 Insurrection

HeadlineJan 14, 2022

The FBI arrested the leader of the far-right Oath Keepers militia Thursday, charging him and 10 others with seditious conspiracy over the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol. Prosecutors say 56-year-old Stewart Rhodes organized a plot to oppose the lawful transfer of presidential power by force. They charge Oath Keepers under Rhodes’s command spread out in a military formation inside the Capitol looking for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, while a heavily armed “quick reaction force” stood by at a hotel just outside of Washington ready to take action. Encrypted messages sent by Rhodes to other militia members read, in part, “We aren’t getting through this without a civil war. … Prepare your mind, body, spirit. … It will be a bloody and desperate fight.” Rhodes is a former U.S. Army paratrooper.

Meanwhile, the House committee investigating the January 6 riot has subpoenaed officials at four social media companies — YouTube, Facebook, Reddit and Twitter — saying they contributed to the spread of misinformation that led to the insurrection.

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