Veterans Group report on Patriot Front criminal activity

A nonprofit veterans group is pressuring prosecutors to bring serious charges against members of the white supremacist group Patriot Front. Veterans group Task Force Butler has released a report that meticulously explains how Patriot Front members can be prosecuted for a variety of state and federal crimes.

The Patriot Front is a far-right, white, racist group formed after the 2017 racist rally Unite the Right. Although widely known for vandalism and demonstrations, its activities have become increasingly aggressive and violent. In June, 31 members were arrested outside a Pride event and charged with conspiring to commit riots. According to authorities, they were armed with shields, helmets, spears and at least one smoke grenade. The cases are still pending.

Task Force Butler’s report, “Project Blacklisted,” identifies members of the group and details how they can be held accountable for alleged violations of dozens of state and federal laws in Idaho, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.

In particular, it focuses on allegations that several members of the Patriot Front committed racist attacks on unarmed black men in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Boston, Massachusetts, and references the arrests at the Pride event in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Members from at least 28 countries are said to have been involved in these “coordinated attacks.”

“Patriot Front meets the legal definition of involvement in terrorism as a street gang and criminal racketeering organization; and their activities constitute conspiracies to commit hate crimes under both state and federal legal definitions,” Task Force Butler writes in the report’s summary.

She alleges that Patriot Front knowingly exploited weaknesses in the law to its advantage, as evidenced by members who attended a march in Boston just weeks after their arrest in Idaho. They know that local prosecutors are more likely to charge them with low-level misdemeanors, which emboldens them to commit potentially criminal acts in other jurisdictions since they are unlikely to face felony or federal charges.

Because the group is hierarchical and organized, Task Force Butler believes that Patriot Front members can be charged with conspiracy in addition to the underlying criminal charge for any act.

“Every single criminal act committed by a Patriot Front gang member on behalf of the organization is the result of a conspiracy by, with and by the organization’s highly hierarchical governance structure and should be treated as such by law enforcement.”

Task Force Butler also says the Patriot Front is part of a national network of white supremacist hate groups.

The report uses the framework of a successful civil lawsuit over the deadly Unite the Right rally as a template. Some defendants in the case Sine v. Kesslerhave been blamed for criminal conspiracy and race-based harassment or violence for their role in organizing the rally.

Task Force Butler sent his 238-page report to prosecutors to support and persuade them to press charges against Patriot Front members. So far, no one has commented publicly on the report.

Task Force Butler founder Kristofer Goldsmith told NBC News that he believes there is more than enough evidence to convict members of various crimes.

“After years of looking at this, I am more than satisfied that the FBI, the attorney generals and these local jurisdictions all have more than enough evidence to take action against this neo-Nazi terrorist gang,” Goldsmith said.

“We as veterans are tired of watching fascists walk around hurting people and not being brought to justice. So if anyone needs to do their homework to ensure justice is found, we are willing to do the homework.”

*Initial publication: September 21, 2022 at 12:08 pm CDT

Claire Goforth

Claire Goforth is a staff writer at the Daily Dot and covers all topics related to politics and technology with a focus on far right and conspiracy theories.

Claire Goforth Veterans Group report on Patriot Front criminal activity

Jaclyn Diaz

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