Oath Keepers founder pleads not guilty to seditious conspiracy charge

Posted 9 days ago


The founder and leader of the Oath Keepers plead not guilty to charges of seditious conspiracy for his alleged role in the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U. S. Capitol.

Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the right-wing militia group, plead not guilty in a Plano, Texas federal courtroom during a brief appearance where he was in the custody of the U. S. Marshals wearing handcuffs and leg irons, according to Reuters.

A prosecutor said at the hearing that the Justice Department will request that Rhodes be detained while he waits for trial.

"He believes he will be found not guilty," James Lee Bright, a lawyer for Rhodes, said, adding that he will oppose the request for pretrial detention. "He has no reason to flee. He has no passport. He has nowhere to go."

Also on Friday, Oath Keeper Edward Vallejo appeared in a Phoenix courtroom to face sedition charges.

Vallejo did not enter a plea but his lawyer indicated he plans to enter a not guilty plea at a future hearing.

Rhodes, Vallejo, and nine other members or associates of the Oath Keepers have been charged with seditious conspiracy in the violent Capitol protest by supporters of former President Trump, authorities said Thursday.

On Jan. 6, several members, wearing camouflaged combat attire, were seen on camera shouldering their way through the crowd and into the Capitol in a military-style formation, authorities say.

The indictment against Rhodes alleges Oath Keepers formed two teams, or "stacks... (Read more)