New federal charges filed against Proud Boys linked to Capitol riots
New charges have been filed against two members of the far-right extremist group Proud Boys in connection with last month's violent siege of the Capitol by pro-Trump supporters, federal court documents show.
Driving the news: Ethan Nordean, also known as Rufio Panman, of Washington state, was arrested Wednesday, and Nicholas Ochs, the leader of the Hawaii chapter of the Proud Boys, was charged with conspiracy to obstruct Congress.
- Nordean, 30, was charged with obstructing or impeding an official proceeding and aiding and abetting, the U.S. Justice Department said.
- Ochs also was charged with stealing and destroying government property, according to a federal indictment unsealed on Wednesday.
- The arrests were first reported by The Wall Street Journal and are the latest in connection with the Capitol riot that killed five people.
What they're saying: "Nordean was observed marching at the front of a group of known Proud Boys shortly before the riot began. It is further alleged that Nordean was among those who entered the U.S. Capitol building after rioters...forced entry into the Capitol by means of destruction of Federal property," the Justice Department said in a statement.
- An indictment alleged Ochs raised funds online to finance his trip to Washington, D.C., and publicized his plans to stop the certification of the presidential election.
- Federal investigators say Ochs defaced the building’s Memorial Door and wrote the words “MURDER THE MEDIA” on it.
- Ochs had previously faced a lesser charge in connection with the riot.
Between the lines: A Wall Street Journal investigation showed many members of the Proud Boys, including Ochs and Nordean, were key instigators of the riot.