Oath Keeper brought explosives to DC before Jan. 6 attack, prosecutor says

By David Morgan

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A member of the Oath Keepers extremist group brought explosives to the Washington DC area ahead of the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol by supporters of former President Donald Trump, according to the U.S. Justice Department. . .

In a court filing, federal prosecutors alleged that Jeremy Brown, a member of Florida’s Oath Keepers, brought explosives to a Virginia hotel in his RV on Jan. 6. A second member of the group, Thomas Caldwell, was later found in possession of a “death list” that included the name of a Georgia election official, according to the document.

In a statement sent by his attorney, Caldwell denied the accusation against him. “The Justice Department’s claim that I tried to assassinate poll workers is a 100% false and disgusting lie. Unfortunately, the mountain of exculpatory evidence that exonerates me is being hidden from public view by the Department of Justice through protective orders,” the statement said.

A legal representative for Brown was not immediately available for comment.

The 28-page court document, filed Friday in US District Court in Washington, details evidence the Justice Department is likely to present later this year in the seditious conspiracy trial of Oath Keepers members, including Caldwell and the group’s leader, Stewart Rhodes. Lists Brown as an unindicted co-conspirator.

The filing came as the congressional panel investigating the Jan. 6 riots was preparing to hold two hearings next week. A hearing scheduled for Tuesday is expected to focus on efforts to rally Trump supporters, including members of the Oath Keepers and Proud Boys extremist groups, on Capitol Hill.

The January 6 attack took place as Congress worked to certify President Joe Biden’s 2020 electoral victory over Trump. US Representative Liz Cheney, a Republican member of the panel, has said Trump could be held criminally responsible for allegedly encouraging the attack with false claims that he stole the election.

More than 840 people have been charged with participating in the Capitol riots, attacking police and sending lawmakers to safety. Some 250 defendants have pleaded guilty, including some members of the Oath Keepers.

(Reporting by David Morgan)

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