Proud Boys Joseph Biggs And Zachary Rehl Sentenced In Jan. 6 Case For Seditious Conspiracy


Washington — Two members of the far-right Proud Boys had been sentenced to 17 years in jail on Thursday after a jury convicted the 2, together with one different member and former Proud Boys chief Enrique Tarrio of seditious conspiracy, essentially the most extreme crime charged within the Justice Division’s investigation into the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol assault. 

Joseph Biggs, of Florida, was the primary of the Proud Boys co-defendants to be sentenced after a jury discovered them responsible of quite a few felony counts tied to the riot. Biggs was additionally convicted of extra fees, together with conspiring to hinder Congress and civil dysfunction, however acquitted of fees together with assaulting officers and destruction of presidency property. 

FILE – Proud Boys members together with Zachary Rehl, left, Ethan Nordean, heart, and Joseph Biggs, stroll towards the U.S. Capitol in Washington, in help of President Donald Trump on Jan. 6, 2021.

Carolyn Kaster / AP

Prosecutors had requested U.S. District Choose Timothy Kelly to condemn Biggs — an  Iraq struggle veteran who suffered from PTSD and later labored for InfoWars — to 33 years in jail. Tarrio’s sentencing was beforehand set for Wednesday however postponed till Sept. 5 as a result of the decide was sick. He, too, faces a authorities sentencing request of 33 years behind bars. 

“Biggs appreciated the tactical advantage that his force had that day, and he understood the significance of his actions against his own government,” The Justice Division wrote in a sentencing memorandum earlier this month, “Biggs understood that the outnumbered forces attempting to hold the Capitol would be powerless due to his side’s overwhelming numbers.”

“There is a reason why we will hold our collective breaths when we approach future elections,” prosecutor Jason McCullough stated throughout Thursday’s sentencing listening to, “They pushed this to the edge of a constitutional crisis.” 

Chatting with the court docket himself on Thursday, Biggs informed the decide he was not a violent individual and apologized for his violent rhetoric. 

“I’m not a terrorist,” Biggs stated, including, “I’m so sorry,” as he spoke by means of tears, explaining he needed to be house to take care of his daughter. 

“When Jan. 6 came up, that was my last time ever going out with the Proud Boys…I was going to announce to the group that I’m done,” he added. 

“I know that I have to be punished, and I understand,” Biggs conceded. 

FILE – Proud Boys members Zachary Rehl, left, and Ethan Nordean, left, stroll towards the U.S. Capitol in Washington, in help of President Donald Trump on Jan. 6, 2021. 

AP Photograph/Carolyn Kaster, File

In the course of the months-long trial, prosecutors offered proof that Biggs was a part of Tarrio’s shut management crew and tied him to the alleged coordination of the mob.

The group was accused of forming a Ministry of Self-Protection (MOSD) construction with Tarrio on the prime, commanding a gaggle of leaders who would strategize their presence at Trump’s Jan. 6 rally.

 Dominic Pezzola, the one defendant to be acquitted of seditious conspiracy, was not an MOSD member. 

Tarrio wasn’t in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6, 2021, however Biggs, Zachary Rehl, Ethan Nordean and Pezzola gathered with over 100 Proud Boys on the Washington Monument and, in keeping with prosecutors, marched towards the Capitol. 

“We’ve taken the Capitol,” Biggs stated on the Capitol’s west entrance, in keeping with trial proof, as Pezzola grabbed a regulation enforcement riot defend and used it to interrupt a window on the Senate facet of the constructing. 

“Biggs acted as the tip of the spear throughout the attack on January 6,” the federal government wrote. “He was among the first wave across the First Street barrier, he tore down the fence at Breach 2, he repositioned himself and charged up the scaffolding at Breach 3, and he was among the first rioters into the Capitol at Breach 4.”

Prosecutors had requested the decide to use a terrorism-related sentencing enhancement when he calculated the defendants’ punishment, arguing that the group tried to affect the federal government by means of intimidation or coercion. 

“The defendants are not terrorists,” Biggs’ protection crew shot again in court docket filings, “Whatever excesses of zeal they demonstrated on January 6, 2021, and no matter how grave the potential interference with the orderly transfer of power due to the events of that day, a decade or more behind bars is an excessive punishment.”

“These men were careless,” Norm Pattis, Biggs’ lawyer stated Thursday. “There is no question they engaged in crimes.” 

“We think the crimes are overstated in this case,” Pattis stated, making a free speech argument and tying the defendants’ actions to the previous president’s rhetoric. 

Throughout Thursday’s listening to, Choose Kelly stated that whereas he would apply the terrorism enhancement to Biggs’ actions on Jan. 6 and was not minimizing the occasions that day, the Proud Boys’ actions in the course of the riot weren’t tantamount to terror assaults meant to inflict mass casualties on People.  

“Despite the jury’s verdicts, in which clearly force is an issue here, no question, I don’t think that’s what the jury found,” the decide stated. “That’s not what the evidence reflected.” 

“What happened on Jan. 6 harms an important American custom that helps support the rule of law and the constitution,” Kelly stated in imposing Biggs’ sentence, explaining he needed to think about Biggs’ actions and subsequent celebration after the Capitol breach. 

Protection attorneys informed the jury that the Proud Boys had been only a glorified “drinking club” the place males shared their anger and contended Tarrio and others had no express plan to withstand the election outcomes or hinder Congress.

In asking for a lesser sentence, Bigg’s legal professionals urged the court docket to “enforce a ceasefire” and ship him to jail for a time period served. He has been in jail since his arrest in 2021. 

However just like the jury that convicted Biggs of seditious conspiracy, Choose Kelly finally dominated the actions warranted a “significant” sentence.

After Bigg’s sentencing, Rehl, his co-defendant and a former president of the Philadelphia Proud Boys, was sentenced to fifteen years in jail. 

Rehl was convicted of quite a few counts throughout a jury trial earlier this 12 months and his sentence was half the 30 years requested by the Justice Division. 

“Rehl manifested both knowledge of the importance of the day and the violence that would be required if politicians did not do what he and his cohorts wanted them to do,” the Justice Division wrote in its sentencing memorandum. 

In the course of the monthslong trial, prosecutors confirmed the jury proof of Rehl’s violent rhetoric earlier than the assault. “Hopefully the firing squads are for the traitors that are trying to steal the election from the American people,” he wrote on social media, in keeping with court docket paperwork. 

At trial, it was revealed that in the course of the assault, Rehl sprayed a chemical irritant at regulation enforcement officers defending the Capitol — which Choose Kelly stated proof proved — after which lied about it on the witness stand. As considered one of solely two Proud Boys defendants to testify in his personal protection in the course of the proceedings, Rehl denied spraying the officers. The decide dominated throughout Thursday’s listening to that Rehl had dedicated perjury at trial. 

In line with authorities court docket papers, after the riot, Rehl — a army veteran and son of a police officer —  wrote he was, “proud as f***.” 

Throughout Thursday’s sentencing listening to, prosecutors drew the court docket’s consideration to Rehl’s statements after his conviction, through which he referred to as the jury’s verdict into query and, in keeping with prosecutors, failed to precise regret. They stated he continued to pose a risk.  

“I spent all my life trying to do the right thing not just for myself, but for my family. I let them all down,” Rehl emotionally informed the court docket on Thursday. “I regret involving myself with any of it. I let it consume my life.” 

He stated he fell for “lies” a couple of stolen 2020 presidential election “hook, line, and sinker” and distanced himself from politicians he stated he as soon as adopted. 

“Jan. 6 was a despicable day,” Rehl stated. 

His protection attorneys urged the court docket in a submitting to disclaim the fear request — an argument the decide denied Thursday — and tried responsible his conduct on former President Donald Trump, writing that whereas they didn’t outright blame Trump, “certainly believing the commander-in-chief and heeding his call should yield some measure of mitigation.” 

In sentencing Rehl, Kelly referred to as Jan. 6 a “national disgrace.” “It not only physically damaged property…it harmed an important American custom,” the decide stated, “That day broke our tradition of peacefully transferring power, which was one of the most precious things that we had as Americans.” 

“It was a miracle, a miracle that there was not a greater loss of life,” the decide stated.  


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