Oath Keepers attorney arrested and charged with obstruction in connection with Capitol riot

The general counsel for far-right anti-government militia group the Oath Keepers was arrested in Texas on 31 August and charged in four courts connected to the attack on the US Capitol, according to the US Department of Justice.

A federal indictment charges Kellye SoRelle with obstruction of an official proceeding and obstruction of justice, as well as conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, and a misdemeanor count of entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds.

Prosecutors allege Ms SoRelle “did corruptly persuade and attempt to corruptly persuade other persons with intent to cause and induce such persons” to “withhold records, documents and other objects” during a joint session of Congress to certifiy Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential election.

She also aided in attempts to “alter, destroy, mutilate and conceal objects with intent to impair the objects’ integrity and availability for use” in a grand jury investigation, according to the indictment.

The US Attorney’s office in Washinton DC announced on Thursday that she was arrested in Junction, Texas on Wednesday and will make her first federal court appearance in Austin in the afternoon.

Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes and several other members of the far-right group face seditious conspiracy charges tied to the assault at the Capitol and in the halls of Congress. Three members have pleaded guilty.

Ms SoRelle also spoke with members of the House select committee investigating the attack during hearings related to lawmakers’ probe this year. The FBI seized her phone last year following charges against Oath Keepers members in connection with the riots.

Prosecutors allege that Mr Rhodes and members of the group spent weeks planning an attempt to disrupt the joint session of Congress, including establishing a cache of weapons and supplies, to prevent Mr Biden’s presidency and keep Donald Trump in office.

Ms SoRelle reportedly joined a meeting the night before the riots that included Mr Rhodes and Enrique Tarrio, a former leader of the nationalist group the Proud Boys who has been seperately charged with seditious conspiracy, along with other members of the far-right, self-described “western chauvinist” gang tied to violence across the US. That meeting has been scrutinised by both federal investigators and the House committee.

Leave a Comment