Anti-Defamation League Online Homepage    ADL Home |  Militia Watch Dog Archive Home |  Law Enforcement |  Search |  About |  Contribute


Militia Watchdog Graphic

Last updated July 21, 1997

Calendar of Conspiracy: A Chronology of Anti-Government Extremist Criminal Activity, January to June 1997

A Militia Watchdog Special Report



The following is a chronology of some of the events surrounding anti-government criminal activity in the United States during the first half of the year 1997. It illustrates both the scope of such activity—from large-scale acts of terrorism to local acts of harassment and intimidation—and its geographic extent—from major cities like Los Angeles and New York to remote rural areas in Texas and Montana. The chronology is not comprehensive. Although all major events are included, no systemized reporting system exists for smaller scale events. As a result, arrests or convictions for charges such as placing bogus liens, impersonating a public official or committing similar offenses are considerably underrepresented in this report. Such activities occur with a high level of frequency across the nation. More than thirty-three states are listed in this report; however, incidents are occurring in every state.




January 2, South Dakota: In Rapid City, South Dakota, "freeman" Bill Huseby is bound over for trial. He is charged with sending false documents to the Pennington county Sheriff’s Office, a former judge, and a private citizen; also, three misdemeanor charges.

January 6, Washington: Seattle resident Richard Frank Burton, arrested with eight other individuals last July on various weapons and conspiracy charges, pleads guilty in U.S. District court to one count of conspiracy and three other charges. His wife, Caitlin Hansen, pleads guilty to one count of destroying and concealing evidence. A third individual, Theodore Carter, pleads guilty to one conspiracy charge and agrees to testify against his fellow defendants. The three are part of a mixed group of militia members and "sovereign citizens."

January 6, Oklahoma: Three common–law court advocates plead guilty in Tulsa, Oklahoma, to a federal conspiracy charge. Kenny Moore, Colleen Moore and Wayne Gunwall had filed bogus liens on IRS agents to the amount of $7 million, and had issued "citizens arrest warrants" against several federal officials. The trial of another defendant, Dan Meador, begins on January 8.

January 10, Oklahoma: Dan Meador is convicted of obstructing justice and illegally communicating with a member of a federal grand jury (see above).

January 13, Virginia: Two Mechanicsville, VA, residents are sentenced to eighteen months in prison on tax evasion charges. Jerry Martin and his wife Sadie Martin, Christian Identity adherents, were "sovereign citizens" who denied the legal existence of the United States.

January 16, Oregon: Common law court activist Charles Stewart, leader of a Portland, Oregon group, tries "in absentia" seven IRS agents at his Kangaroo court. Two weeks later, the "court" rules that four of the agents should pay fines of $100,000 each for seizing a Portland home. However, it was up to the man whose home was seized to collect the money.

January 22, Georgia, North Carolina: District Attorney Albert Taylor, Jr., prosecutor for the Enotah Circuit in Georgia, requests and receives a "writ of non molestando" to stop a "sovereign citizen," Melvin Julius Robinson, from harassing him. Robinson’s actions included filing a $100 million frivolous lawsuit against him and demanding that Taylor appear before the "Our One Supreme Court" of Franklin, North Carolina. In response, Taylor dusted off an ancient writ that probably had never been used in the state to restrain Robinson from using the legal process to "molest, vilify, obstruct, or hinder" the lawful discharge of official duties.

January 24, Missouri: Five common law court advocates in Lincoln County, Missouri, are sentenced to two years in prison and a $5,000 fine, and a sixth, Dennis Logan, is sentenced to seven years in prison and a $5,000 fine. The defendants were charged with tampering with a judicial official—specifically, filing a $10.8 million bogus lien against a judge to force him to drop a speeding case involving the daughter of one of the defendants. Nine other defendants, also convicted, have yet to be sentenced.

January 24, Minnesota: Michael Moeller is charged in Winona County, Minnesota, of making terroristic threats. Moeller, a militia sympathizer, threatened to blow up the headquarters of the state Department of Natural Resources, where he formerly worked.

January 28, Wisconsin: Sally Minniecheske, the wife of Wisconsin Posse Comitatus leader Donald Minniecheskie, is sentenced to nine months for disorderly conduct, obstructing an officer and fleeing arrest. The charges stemmed from a 1995 incident during a property seizure in which Minniecheskie threatened a police chief and led him on a car chase through Tigerton, Wisconsin. The Minniecheskies have been involved in anti-government activities in Tigerton for more than twenty years.

January 30, Pennsylvania: In Philadelphia, Christian Identity minister Mark Thomas is indicted on conspiracy charges related to the armed robberies committed by the "Midwestern Bank Bandits," who dubbed themselves the "Aryan Republican Army." Also arrested is Michael Brescia. Brescia and Thomas bring the total number arrested for these robberies to six.

January 30, Mississippi, Tennessee: Armed militia members from Mississippi precipitate an unexpected standoff near Memphis, Tennessee, when they show up to halt the eviction of two Southaven residents from their home. Local officials back away from the eviction and say they will pursue the matter in court some more.




February 6, California: Two California men are found guilty of fraud in San Jose for passing bogus checks created by the Montana Freemen. The jury finds Robert Young guilty of conspiracy, three counts of bank fraud, two counts of mail fraud, and one count of filing a false claim with the IRS. Frank Pepper is convicted on two counts of mail fraud. Two other defendants had plead guilty before the trial.

February 10, Connecticut: Nena Frankle and John Barney are arrested by local police on charges of interfering with police and criminal trespass, after they resisted attempts by authorities in Connecticut to take possession of their foreclosed residence. Frankle and Barney are members of a group of Connecticut common law court advocates and tax protesters which advocates such resistance.

February 10, Ohio: Peter Langan is convicted in federal court in Columbus, Ohio, of five felonies related to 1994 armed robberies of banks in Columbus and Cincinnati. Langan is the leader of the "Midwestern Bank Bandits," who claimed to engage in armed robbery to support their revolutionary struggle.

February 14, Missouri: The remaining seven common law court activists of the thirteen convicted earlier in Missouri receive their sentences: six activists sentenced to two years in prison and a seventh activist to seven years. All additionally must pay a $5,000 fine.

Ca. February 15, Washington: Charles Miller and three other men are arrested in Washington on sixteen counts of conspiracy to defraud banks, mail fraud, and interstate transportation of stolen property. Another accomplice, Kathleen Cottam, was arrested earlier and pled guilty. The suspects had obtained bogus money orders from Montana Freeman leader LeRoy Schweitzer in 1995 and had been using them to buy cars and motor homes in Washington. Charles Christenson, Kurt Gilson, and Veryl Knowles were also arrested.

February 15, Ohio, Washington, Arkansas, Montana, Utah: Near Wilmington, Ohio, Chevie and Cheyne Kehoe, two brothers from Washington, engage in two shootouts with local police during and following a routine traffic stop. A bystander is wounded. The Kehoes, Christian Identity adherents with ties to Aryan Nations and other white supremacist groups, avoid an intensive manhunt and vanish along with their families. Their mobile home is later found near Casper, Wyoming. Chevie Kehoe is wanted for questioning in connection with the murders of an Arkansas gun dealer with ties to the militia movement, and his family.

February 18, Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania Aryan Nations leader Mark Thomas pleads guilty to plotting seven bank robberies and using the cash to further the cause of white supremacy in connection with the Midwestern Bank Bandits.

February 20, Georgia: Three Georgia militia members receive stiff sentences for their roles in a conspiracy to build pipe bombs for use against the federal government. Bob Starr is given 8 years, one month; while James McCranie and Troy Spain are sentenced to six years in prison each.

February 20, Minnesota: Three Minnesota residents receive convictions for attempting to pass bogus checks obtained from the Montana Freemen. Marilyn Kerkvliet and Robert Leffler are convicted of eight counts of mail fraud and passing counterfeit checks each. Ronald Kerkvliet is convicted of a single count of mail fraud.

February 21, Montana, North Carolina: The first conviction arrives for members of the Montana Freemen, who held off authorities for 81 days in the spring of 1996. Russell Landers and an associate, James Vincent Wells, are convicted of seven and twelve federal fraud and conspiracy counts, respectively, ending a trial marked by combative behavior by Landers. The two used bogus money orders to purchase vehicles to drive back to Montana.

February 21, Washington: Supporters of the Washington militia/freemen defendants on trial in Seattle file a $1.76 billion lien against the judge, John Coughenour, and five prosecutors.

February 24, Texas: Local authorities in Texas issue an arrest warrant for Rick McLaren, leader of the secessionist common-law group, "The Republic of Texas," after McLaren failed to appear for a preliminary hearing on a 1995 burglary charge. However, authorities take no steps to arrest McLaren, who is barricaded in a remote West Texas settlement.

February 28, Washington: The Washington militia/freemen explosives conspiracy case ends in a mistrial. The mistrial is declared on federal conspiracy charges against seven people, while four defendants are convicted of weapons charges. Washington State Militia founder John Pitner is convicted of possession and transfer of machine guns. John Lloyd Kirk and Marlin Lane Mack is convicted of possession of unregistered destructive device. Gary Marvin Kuehnoel is convicted of possession of a machine gun. Jururs can not reach verdicts on additional weapons charges against Kirk and his wife Judy Carol Kirk, and against Kuehnoel. Kuehnoel is found innocent of three counts of possession of unregistered firearm. An eighth defendant previously had pled guilty.




March 1, Wisconsin: $2 million cash bond is ordered for Wisconsin man charged with hiring a hit man to murder his estranged wife and her father. James Schuman, the man charged, is a member of Wisconsin Militia.

March 2, Washington, Idaho: Trial begins for Charles Barbee, Robert Berry and Jay Merrell, Christian Identity white supremacists part of a bank-robbing gang in Spokane, WA, area associated with the Phineas Priesthood.

March 2, Ohio: Ohio Aryan Nations member Morris Gulett is arrested for ramming a Dayton police cruiser then fleeing.

March 3, New Hampshire: New Hampshire militia leader pleads guilty to federal charges of stealing $100,000 in equipment from Fort Devens Army base. Fitzhugh MacCrae, member of Hillsborough County Dragoons, admits to three counts. He is the second Dragoon to plead guilty.

March 3, Texas: "Republic of Texas" member John Albert Crain files $27 million lawsuit over three traffic tickets in San Angelo. The atmosphere between "Republic of Texas" members and the real government of Texas grows increasingly tense.

March 4, Texas: Pecos County Sheriff Steve Bailey warns he may have to use extreme measures to arrest Richard McLaren, "ambassador" for the Republic of Texas, for warrants on burglary and failure to appear in court. McLaren is holed up in a housing resort west of Fort Davis, Texas.

March 6, Wisconsin: Federal prosecutors go to court to stop two Milwaukee area men, Robert Raymond and Robert Bernhoft, from selling their "De-Taxing America Program."

March 9, Oregon: Salem, Oregon, Militia leader Michael Cross is sentenced to five years on probation for pleading guilty to criminal mistreatment after receiving $25,000 gift from an elderly foster-care resident.

Ca. March 9, Texas: Members of extremist group Republic of Texas begin "impeachment" proceedings against Richard McLaren as the group, under pressure from law enforcement authorities, fragments.

March 10, California: Elizabeth Broderick of Palmdale, California, is sentenced to nearly seventeen years in prison on 28 charges related to selling more than 8,000 fraudulent "Comptroller Warrants" with a face value of more than $800 million. Several accomplices also receive prison sentences in subsequent weeks.

March 12, Connecticut: "Sovereign citizens" John Barney and Nina Barney of Salisbury, CT, appear in court on charges of criminal trespass and interfering with police. They are members of a common law court and they refuse to vacate the properties where they live despite having hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of unpaid loans.

March 13, Washington, Idaho: FBI agents arrest a fourth suspect, Brian Ratigan, in the Spokane bombings, about the same time as the prosecution rests in the trial of three other suspects.

March 13, Oklahoma: Former Tulsa opera singer Carol Elizabeth Howe is indicted in Federal court in Tulsa, accused of willfully making a bomb threat, possession of a non-registered destructive device and conspiracy. James Dodson Viefhous, already in custody, is also indicted. The two are founders and members of the National Socialist Alliance of Oklahoma, as well as part of the Aryan Intelligence Network. They left a message on this phone network that bombs would be detonated in 15 US cities unless action was taken by December 15 by "white warriors" against the government of the U.S.

March 13, Ohio, Pennsylvania: Aryan Republican Army members Scott Stedeford and Peter Langan plead not guilty to conspiracy charges related to bank robberies they carried out. Both have been previously convicted on armed robbery charges. Mark Thomas, an Aryan Nations leader in Pennsylvania, previously pled guilty to the charges. Thomas and another defendant are cooperating with government investigators; a fifth defendant, Michael Brescia, is jailed and awaiting trial. Another suspect committed suicide in jail.

March 17, Montana, Indiana: Joe Holland, leader of the North American Volunteer Militia, is sentenced in Missoula, Montana, to 10 years in prison for jury tampering and advocating violence. He is also indicted on charges in Indiana.

March 17, Texas: Texas officials issue two more (civil) arrest warrants against Republic of Texas members Robert Kesterson ("secretary of state") and Carolyn Carney ("secretary of inter-agency coordination").

March 17, California: California "Patriot" Timothy Paul Kootenay, is sentenced to 300 days in county jail and four years’ probation after pleading guilty to purchasing assault rifles with bogus money orders issued by Family Farm Preservation, a "patriot" group linked with the Posse Comitatus.

March 19, Arizona: Six members of the Arizona Viper Militia are sentenced to jail terms for conspiracy to make bombs. The longest sentence is nine years. All had pled guilty. The number eventually increases to 10 who plead guilty. Two do not and will go to trial.

March 21, Ohio: The FBI and ATF jointly post a $60,000 reward for information leading to the arrests of Aryan Nations members Cheyne and Chevie Kehoe for shooting at police officers in Ohio in February. The Kehoe brothers are thought to have fled back to their Spokane area origins.

March 21, Alabama: Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals unanimously affirms the capital murder conviction of a "patriot," George Sibley, Jr., found guilty in the 1993 shooting death of an Opelika police officer. His common-law wife, Linda Lyon Block, is also on death row for the same offense.

March 25, North Carolina: Dunn, North Carolina, resident Arvalee McLamb is fined $5,000 and sentenced to five months in prison after pleading guilty to failing to file a federal income tax return. McLamb had ties to the Montana Freemen; he is also charged in a federal indictment of various crimes committed in connection with James Vincent Wells and Montana Freeman Russell Landers. McLamb and Wells belonged to an extremist group innocuously called ‘The Civil Rights Task Force."

March 25, Kansas: Two Kansas residents are convicted in Tulsa for passing Montana Freemen checks. Bill and Karen Hanzlicek were found guilty of conspiracy, bank fraud, mail fraud and passing a counterfeit check.

March 26, Florida: In Stuart, Florida, John Foster, is charged with obtaining $662,000 in bogus checks from the Montana Freemen and using them to pay off the IRS and his mortgage company.

March 26, Ohio: In Columbus, Ohio, common law court activist Larry Russell is found guilty of escape and sentenced to 1 years in prison. He fled Ohio following a failed attempt to arrest him for driving without a license, after which he was charged with assaulting a police officer and escape, but was arrested at the Alaska border and extradited.

March 27, Nevada: Nevada militia man Harry Tootle is convicted on charges of drawing a gun on a security guard, then resisting arrest.

March 27, Arkansas, Missouri: Arkansas citizen Robert Joos is convicted of resisting arrest and carrying a concealed weapon during a confrontation with Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers in 1994. The troopers were attempting to arrest him near his church commune (the "Sacerdotal Order of the David Company") in connection with a 1987 misdemeanor conviction involving a false court summons served to a trooper. Law enforcement authorities are still searching for Timothy Thomas Coombs, wanted for shooting and seriously wounding a state trooper in retaliation for Joos’ arrest.

March 29, South Carolina, Oregon: In Anderson, SC, Embassy of Heaven member Frank Lewis stages a seven day hunger strike when arrested for driving without a license and operating an uninsured vehicle. This is one of many hunger strikes staged by members of the group, which preaches against all forms of government interference. The Embassy of Heaven issues fake drivers licenses, plates, and registrations for its members; these are purchased by people all over the country. In late winter, Embassy of Heaven members are evicted from their "church" in Sublimity, Oregon, for nonpayment of county taxes.

March 30, Michigan: Kalamazoo, Michigan, militia member Brendon Blasz is arrested and indicted on suspicion of making pipe bombs and other illegal explosives. Blasz and his "small militia band" planned to bomb the federal building in Battle Creek, an IRS building, a television station and federal armies, according to an affidavit by an informant. The Michigan Militia claims to have expelled them in 1995.




April 2, Washington, Idaho: The jury hearing Spokane bank bandits case convicts the three defendants on illegal weapons charges and stolen vehicle charges, but deadlocks on the more serious bank robbery and bombing charges when a sole jury member, sympathetic to the right-wing extremists, refuses to convict.

April 3, California: A Berkeley, California, woman, Mary Margaret Lund, is convicted of using bogus checks to purchase a motorhome in January 1996. She passed more than $223,000 worth of bad checks.

April 5, Montana: Fourteen of the infamous "Montana Freemen" are hit with a 40-count indictment that will take the place of earlier indictments against them. Charges include multiple counts of conspiracy bank fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, false claims, threats to public officials and weapons charges. A second indictment charges eight people with helping fugitives escape arrest.

April 7, Washington: Gary Kuehnol, one of the seven Washington militia/freemen charged with conspiracy (see above), pleads guilty to a charge of transferring a machine gun to a federal informer. He will not face new conspiracy charges as a result of the agreement. Another participant, Caitlin Hansen, earlier pled guilty to obstruction of justice and was sentenced to three years of probation. Six still await a new trial.

April 8, Montana: Pre-trial hearings begin for the Montana Freemen.

April 8, Washington: A Clark County, Washington, motorist is arrested with 2 loaded handguns, a bogus license plate, and a concealed weapons "permit" issued by the "State Militia." Jed Carson was cited on suspicion of operating a vehicle with illegal plates, carrying loaded weapons in a vehicle, driving without a license and failure to provide proof of insurance. The plate read "SOV, 064-MNE, States of America united, America the Republic." His "sales contract" for his vehicle was from the "British West Indies," a non-existent country.

April 11, New York: A jury convicts New York city police officer Jose Lugo on tax charges related to nonpayment of taxes on $163,000 of income. Ten other police officers have been convicted on similar charges; four more are facing prosecution. The officers apparently got the idea from Indiana militia leader Joe Holland and other tax protest leaders.

April 19, Idaho: New militia group forms in Idaho County, Idaho, called the "Idaho Mountain Boys." Its leader warns that if the county enforces building codes, the militia will be ready to intervene.

April 20, Texas: Republic of Texas leader Richard McLaren vows war if authorities try to arrest him. "Once they make the move," he says, ‘we’ll have millions of Americans on our side – including every militia in the country. We’re talking war here."

April 20, Montana: Marc and Cheryl Andrea, of Florence, Montana, are indicted for recruiting 125 Missoula area residents into a California-based tax protest organization.

April 22, Texas: Republic of Texas member Jo Ann Canaday Turner (see above) is arrested on two counts of contempt of court for filing a fraudulent lien in violation of a court order and for not attending a hearing.

April 22, Ohio: Ohio Aryan Nations member Larry Wayne Harris receives a probation sentence after pleading guilty to a single count of wire fraud for obtaining samples of bubonic plague.

April 23, Texas: The FBI arrests three men and one woman for planning a bomb attack on a gas refinery northwest of Fort Worth. The planned bombing was to divert attention from an armored car robbery that would finance their extremist activities. The suspects have Klan ties.

April 23, California: White supremacist Todd Vanbiber of Winter Park is injured while making a pipe bomb; the weapon blows up in his face. Investigating authorities find materials linking Vanbiber to the neo-Nazi National Alliance, as well as 14 unexploded pipe bombs.

April 27, Texas: After police arrest Republic of Texas "chief of security," Bob Scheidt, on weapons possession charges, Republic of Texas members ordered by Richard McLaren storm a nearby residence, firing shots, to kidnap two neighbors as hostages. The incident begins a standoff. The two hostages, a man and his wife, were vocal opponents of McLaren.

April 28, Texas: After twelve hours of captivity, Joe and Margaret Ann Rowe are released by Republic of Texas members after authorities swap jailed ROT member Bob Scheidt for the two. Formal charges are filed against six ROT members, from engaging in organized criminal activity to aggravated kidnapping with a deadly weapon.

April 28, California: A huge blast in a Olivehurst, California, home leads to the arrest of sympathizer William Goehler (a convicted rapist), charged with possessing explosives. Goehler suffered a neck injury in the blast at his home, while his wife and one of this children were slightly injured. The explosive material was in a tree outside the home. Goehler is associated with the Twin Cities Free Militia. The previous year, he traveled to Jordan, Montana, to show his support for the Montana Freemen.

April 28, Texas: Leaders of the other factions of the splintered Republic of Texas group, Archie Lowe and David Johnson, distance themselves from Richard McLaren.

April 28, Texas: A Texas Ranger assault team arrives at Ft. Davis, Texas. About 200 law enforcement officers surround McLaren’s location, where close to 10 Republic of Texas members are holed up.

April 29, Texas: Two armored personnel carriers arrive at Ft. Davis. They are named "Bubba One" and "Bubba Two."

April 30, Texas: Texas Rangers arrest seven individuals in two vehicles at a truck stop in Pecos, Texas, with a supply of fully automatic assault weapons and some explosive materials. The individuals were on their way to join Richard McLaren. A few others are also stopped in following days, but the massive action predicted by McLaren does not occur. Meanwhile, McLaren and authorities talk sporadically by fax and phone. McLaren eventually breaks off negotiations.

April 30, California: Following the arrest of William Goehler (see above) on explosives charges, two associates of his, Kevin Quinn and Vernon Weckner, were arrested in Yuba City, California, and 500 pounds of the volatile explosive petrogel were found. Weckner is one of the central militia organizers in northern California; he also is a common law activist and a tax protester.




Ca. May 1, Oregon: Common law court advocates Dick Lancial and Thor Lancial are indicted by a grand jury in Multnomah County, Oregon, on multiple counts of forgery and simulating the legal process for their common law court activities.

May 1, New York: Bronx-area extremist blows his hand off in his apartment booby-trapped with homemade bombs. The man, John Saperstein, an unemployed construction worker, had at least five bombs in his apartment. Neighbors indicated that Saperstein talked a lot about the "Patriots of America" and the militia.

May 1, Colorado: Federal agents arrest Colorado militia leader Ron Cole (the "Colorado First Light Infantry") and two other militia members on weapons charges in the Denver suburb of Aurora, Colorado. Authorities seize weapons and explosives materials. Ron Cole, who claims to be a militant Branch Davidian, has been one of the more vocal militia leaders in recent months. Police find six fully automatic AK-47 rifles, three land mines, 75 pounds of rocket fuel, a pipe bomb, and much ammunition.

May 1, Florida: Brevard County (FL) militia member Brian Edward Lanier is arrested after making threats that he would kill himself on the state seal and blow up an insurance building. He was held on an outstanding warrant from another county for a 1989 aggravated assault.

May 1, Texas : Police negotiators send Richard McLaren a "final offer" and threaten to move in to arrest them. They also cut off power to his trailer.

May 2, California: Police investigating the Yuba County explosives ring of Vernon Weckner, Kevin Quinn, and William Goehler, arrest three more men, Jason Fox, Edward Whitlow and Robert Scott Deaver, charged with possessing explosives. The six plead not guilty.

May 2, Texas: Republic of Texas member Robert Scheidt surrenders to authorities surrounding McLaren’s "embassy." Meanwhile, police units move closer to the compound. Richard McLaren issues a plea for "reinforcements" and he and four followers fax their wills to state police.

May 2, Washington: Richard Frank Burton, who pled guilty to possessing pipe bombs and other charges in connection with the Washington militia/freemen bombmaking conspiracy, is sentenced to 46 months in prison.

May 3, Colorado: Arsonists destroy IRS offices in a building in Colorado Springs, spray-painting "AAR" or "ARA" inside the building. They cause more than $1 million in damage.

May 3, Texas: Most of the remaining Republic of Texas members surrender to authorities. Richard McLaren, his wife Evelyn, and three followers (Richard Otto, Greg and Karen Paulson), walk out of their hideout after signing a "cease-fire" agreement with Texas Rangers. Two members, Richard Keys and Mike Matson, decided not to surrender and fled into the Davis Mountains. Authorities began a search with bloodhounds, helicopters, and troopers on horseback. Police find more than 60 pipe bombs at the "embassy."

May 5, Texas: One or both of the two Republic of Texas fugitives fire shots at bloodhounds, wounding two of them, in the remote Davis Mountains. Later that day, police shoot and kill one of the two fugitives. The other apparently escapes. Meanwhile, Richard and Evelyn McLaren are indicted on charges that could bring up to hundreds of years in prison.

May 8, Texas: Five more Republic of Texas members are arrested as part of McLaren’s scheme to issue $1.8 billion in bogus warrants: Jasper Edward Baccus, Joe Louis Reece, Steven Craig Crear, Erwin Leo Brown, and Mark Anthony Hernandez. Also arrested is Republic of Texas leader Robert Kesterson, on three counts of contempt of court out of Travis County, where he filed bogus liens and other documents in violation of a judge’s order. Donald Joe Varnell was another member arrested on contempt of court charges. State authorities also filed suit against Carolyn Carney for nonpayment of taxes. Other leaders, including Archie Lowe and Darrell Franks, are also charged with contempt.

May 9, California: LA police arrest five militia members, seizing a grenade launcher, hand grenades, hand grenade components, automatic assault rifles, body armor, night vision goggles, and over 100 different types of weapons. Arrested are Glenn Yee, a reserve police officer, Alvin Ung, Mark Grand, Timothy Swanson and Raymond Durand. None have any previous criminal history. Police say more arrests are expected; the suspects were allegedly planning to attack several Southern California targets. Durand is later said not to be associated with the militia suspects, but rather a separate case.

May 10, California: A seventh man, Daniel Sparhawk, is arrested in connection with the Yuba explosives case, on charges of possessing two tubes of petrogel. His girlfriend, Tina Lorene Terrell, is also arrested, bringing the total number to ten.

May 12, New Hampshire: New Hampshire militia leader Brian Chabot pleads guilty to his role in theft of $100,000 worth of military equipment (see above). Chabot is the third of three to plead guilty.

May 16, Wisconsin: Three members of anti-tax group in Wisconsin are given a 20-count indictment charging them with tax fraud. These members of Sovereign Citizens for Liberty, Frank A. Wysocki, Alan Cooper and Robert Iacoe, sold "untax" packages to gullible people.

May 17, Oregon: Portland, Oregon, area resident James Bell, active in militia and common law court groups, is arrested by the IRS for obstructing the IRS. Among other things, Bell devised a project called "Operation LocatIRS" to learn the home addresses of IRS employees in order to intimidate them. He is also suspected of having used a chemical called mercaptan in a March 16 stink-bombing of an IRS office. Bell is more well known for his Internet essay "Assassination Politics," which proposed a system of rewards for people who predict the deaths of government officials.

May 19, Montana, North Carolina: Russell Dean Landers and Vincent Wells, two of the Montana Freemen defendants, are sentenced in Wilmington, NC, on charges of conspiring to commit bank fraud, intimidate IRS agents and transport stolen property across state lines.

May 20, Pennsylvania: In federal court in Philadelphia, Michael Brescia pleads guilty to charges of conspiracy and armed robbery and agreed to testify against fellow members of the Aryan Republican Army.

May 21, Oklahoma: Tax protester Wayne Gunwall of Ponca City, Oklahoma, is sentenced to 15 months in prison for conspiring with two others to harass IRS agents. The other defendants, Kenney Moore and Colleen Moore who, like Gunwall, pled guilty to one of the counts, have not yet been sentenced.

May 22, Connecticut: A Connecticut judge postpones the attempted kidnapping trial of "patriot" leader James "Bo" Gritz and his son James R. Gritz until September.

May 23, Oklahoma: Wayne Gunwall and Howard M. Boos are convicted in federal court on a three-count indictment of conspiring to file multimillion-dollar liens against IRS agents (see above, below).

May 27, Florida: In Tampa, Florida, Emilio Ippolito, his daughter, and six followers, members of the "Constitutional Common Law Court," go on trial on charges of conspiracy and obstruction of justice. Ippolito is the leader of one of the most prominent common law courts in the nation.

May 29, West Virginia: A "colonel" in the West Virginia Mountaineer Militia pleads guilty to making a bomb for other militia members who were plotting to bomb an FBI fingerprint facility. Edward Moore is one of seven defendants in the case; he faces up to ten years in prison.

May 30, Washington: Gary Kuehnoel, one of the Washington militia/freemen defenders (see above), is sentenced to 27 months in jail for illegal possession of a machine gun, and ordered to pay a $6,000 fine. The sentence was part of an agreement in which all other charges were dropped.




June 2, Oklahoma, Colorado: In Denver, Colorado, Timothy McVeigh is convicted for his role in the bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City in April 1995. He is later given the death penalty.

June 4, Florida: A Jacksonville jury acquits Florida "patriot" and ostrich farmer William Law of 21 counts of defrauding people by placing bogus liens on people involved with his divorce. The jury believed the argument of Law’s lawyer that Law did not defraud anyone because no one would believe the liens were real.

June 5, Arizona: Trial begins for remaining Arizona Viper Militia defendants, Charles Knight. Viper Christopher Floyd still awaits trial.

June 5, Oklahoma: A federal judge sentences two Oklahoma common law activist Dan Meador to 16 months in prison, three years supervised release and a $2,000 fine for obstructing justice and illegally communicating with a grand jury. Meador’s case was linked to the case involving Kenney and Colleen Moore and Wayne Gunwall.

June 12, West Virginia: The second of seven defendants, Jack Phillips, in the Mountaineer Militia case agrees to plead guilty to a charge of conspiracy to make bombs.

June 12, West Virginia: FBI affidavits reveal that the Mountaineer Militia considered killing Jay Rockefeller and Alan Greenspan, as well as their families, in a "holy war" against the federal government.

June 16, Washington, Ohio: Cheyne Kehoe, wanted since February for a shootout with police in Ohio, surrenders in Washington. He will be extradited to Ohio.

June 16, Utah: John Chaney is sentenced in Provo, Utah, to life in prison for aiding in the rape of his daughter. When he appeared for sentencing, he ordered bailiffs to arrest the judge for treason, but the bailiffs did not respond. Chaney, a common law court activist and member of an extreme Mormon sect, was convicted in April on three counts of aiding and abetting in the rape of his (then 13-year old) daughter at the hands of one of his followers. He has launched numerous lawsuits against Utah judges for conspiring against his religious freedom.

June 17, Utah, Ohio: Chevie Kehoe is arrested in Cedar City, Utah, after Cheyne Kehoe reveals to authorities where he is.

June 23, Washington, Idaho: The second trial for the accused "Spokane Bank Bandits" begins. Robert Berry, Charles Barbee and Verne Jay Merrell are once again defendants. The fourth defendant will have a separate trial in September.

June 23, Arizona: Arizona Viper Charles Knight is convicted of conspiracy to make or possess unregistered destructive devices.

June 24, California: Todd Vanbiber, the Orange County, California, man who blew himself up while constructing a pipe bomb (see above), pleads guilty to two federal explosives violations. Vanbiber was a member of the neo-Nazi National Alliance.

June 26, Colorado: Barry Taylor is convicted in Adams County, Colorado, of using bogus "freemen" checks to pay off his debts. Taylor is one of 12 indicted Coloradans and the first to go to trial.

June 27, Utah: Former Montana Freeman standoff participant Gloria Ward is found guilty of four counts of Social Security fraud. Ward had been claiming Social Security survivor’s benefits as the mother of the man’s child, despite having sued another man whom she claimed was the real father. She faces up to twenty years in prison.

June 30, California: In Ventura County, Isabel Oxx is evicted from her home, ending a long ordeal in which she lost title to her house after using a "freeman" check to pay off her mortgage. She will go to trial in early July on federal charges of jury tampering in connection with the case of Elizabeth Broderick (see above).


Militia Watchdog Militia Watchdog Graphic Table of Contents
Mark Pitcavage E-Mail