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Criminal Indictment

 Investigation Into Violent White 

Supremacist Gang Brings Additional 

Charges, Rico Indictment

(DOJ) - 10/28/2020 - The U.S. Justice Department has announced that additional charges have been brought in a superseding indictment against members and associates of a white supremacist gang known as the 1488s. The 1488s have been charged as a criminal organization that was involved in narcotics distribution, arson, obstruction of justice, and acts of violence including murder, assault, and kidnapping.

Two new defendants were added to the recently unsealed superseding indictment. Felicia King, 55, of Wasilla, Alaska, was charged with accessory after the fact for her role in the August 2017 beating, kidnapping, and murder of Michael Staton, aka “Steak Knife.”

Justin Eaton, aka “Skulls” 45, of Anchorage, Alaska, who had been previously charged in a separate indictment as a felon in possession of a firearm, was charged with RICO conspiracy, kidnapping and assault for his role in the April 2, 2017, beating of a former 1488 member.

Original defendants Filthy Fuhrer, (formerly Timothy Lobdell), 42; Roy Naughton, aka “Thumper,” 40; Glen Baldwin, aka “Glen Dog,” 37; Craig King, aka “Oakie,” 53; and Colter O’Dell, 26, were all charged in a RICO Conspiracy. Fuhrer and Naughton also face additional charges for federal kidnapping, as well as kidnapping and assault in aid of racketeering for incidents occurring in April and July of 2017.

In the original indictment, Fuhrer, Naughton, Baldwin, King, O’Dell, and Beau Cook, 32, were charged with murder in aid of racketeering, kidnapping in aid of racketeering, assault in aid of racketeering, kidnapping, and conspiracy to commit assault and kidnapping in aid of racketeering. Two other key members, Nicholas M. Kozorra, aka “Beast,” 29, and Dustin J. Clowers, 34, previously pleaded guilty to murder in aid of racketeering in unsealed court documents. Additionally, Cook has pleaded guilty to kidnapping for his role in the Staton homicide.

According to the superseding indictment, the 1488s are a violent prison-based gang operating inside and outside of state prisons throughout Alaska and elsewhere. The 1488s employed Nazi-derived symbols to identify themselves and their affiliation with the gang. The most coveted tattoo of 1488s members was the 1488s “patch” (an Iron Cross superimposed over a Swastika), which could be worn only by “made” members who generally gained full membership by committing an act of violence on behalf of the gang.

According to the indictment, as part of their operations, 1488s members and associates engaged in illegal activities under the protection of the enterprise, including narcotics trafficking, weapons trafficking, and other illegal activities to promote the influence of the gang The 1488s allegedly had an organizational structure, which is outlined in written “rules” widely distributed to members throughout Alaska and elsewhere.

Members of the 1488s allegedly acted in different roles in order to further the goals of their organization, including “bosses” who had ultimate authority in all gang matters. “Key holders” were allegedly responsible for all gang matters within penal facilities where 1488s had a presence, and in “free world” Alaska (outside of prison). “Enforcers” were allegedly responsible for enforcing the rules and performing tasks as assigned by higher-ranking gang members. “Prospects” for membership were required to familiarize themselves with Nazi-inspired white supremacist ideology. Violence against law enforcement was also a means of gaining standing within the 1488s. Female associates of the gang were referred to as “lady-eights”.

In or about 2016, Fuhrer allegedly became more aggressive in his efforts to impose discipline within the gang. He allegedly believed that members who were defying the 1488 code of conduct were diminishing the power and influence of the gang. As outlined in the superseding indictment, this culminated in the kidnapping and assault of former members on April 2, 2017, and July 20, 2017, and the kidnapping, assault, and murder of Staton on Aug. 3, 2017. These acts were allegedly ordered by leadership of the 1488s acting from within and from outside of the prison system.

The charges in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

The FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force, and the Alaska State Troopers, Alaska Bureau of Investigation, investigated this case in conjunction with the District of Alaska U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Organized Crime Division and the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section (OCGS). Investigative Assistance was provided by IRS Criminal Investigation; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the U.S. Marshals Service, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, Anchorage Police Department (APD), and the State of Alaska’s Department of Corrections.

This case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney Chad McHenry of OCGS and Assistant U.S. Attorneys William Taylor, James Klugman, and Chris Schroeder of the District of Alaska.

Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian C. Rabbitt of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Bryan Schroder of the District of Alaska, Special Agent in Charge Robert Britt of the FBI’s Anchorage Field Office, and Alaska State Trooper Captain David Hanson, Commander of the Alaska Bureau of Investigation, made the announcement.

   Charges detailed in the indictments are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.


   Source: U.S. Dept. of Justice press release
   See also: indictment download

By the Numbers


COVID-19 Cases Surge; Countries

Struggle To Avoid Second Deadly Wave


Missouri and Illinois a Contrast in Severity, Approach


By Steve Rensberry 
RP News
___________

EDWARDSVILLE - (RP News) - 10/19/2020 - The COVID-19 pandemic is continuing to threaten the stability of countries around the world, including the United States, with the latest figures showing Europe and many other countries struggling to avoid a potentially devastating second wave amid a new surge in cases.

A graph of COVID-19 cases from statista
    According to statista data journalist Felix Richter, increased testing accounts only for portion of the increase in numbers.

Citing data from the World Health Organization, Richter writes: “According to the World Health Organization, daily new cases hit a new high of 394,501 on October 17, with the seven-day average quickly approaching 350,000. While the high number of new cases is partly due to a steep increase in testing compared to a couple of months ago, the most recent surge in new infections, with Europe at the forefront, cannot be attributed to testing alone.”

The total number of people who have contracted COVID-19 worldwide has now topped 40 million, leading to 1.1 million deaths.

On Oct. 18, Illinois officials reported just over 3,100 new cases of COVID-19 and 22 new deaths in the state. Since the start of the crisis, the state has recorded 347,161 infections, and 9,236 deaths.

Illinois Gov. J.P. Pritzker expressed concern on Monday that the state could be facing a new wave of the virus, citing increasing hospitalizations and positivity rates.

Missouri, meanwhile, has been reporting record numbers and positivity rates. As reported in this AP story, the state logged a record number of COVID-19 cases this past Saturday, with 2,357 infections, and 1,768 cases on Sunday. Total cases statewide are at 156,696, with 2,582 deaths.

Nationwide, the United States has experienced more than 8.4 million infections leading to 224,159 deaths (4 percent). Roughly 5.49 million people (96 percent) have been discharged or have recovered.

Voting Matters

Voting is Your Right and

 Responsibility,

 Not a Spectator Sport

 

By James Grandone
Commentary 
____________

Oct. 14, 2020 - Did you vote for president in 2016? Some 63 million voted Republican, while 66 million voted Democratic. Unfortunately, that is out of 200 million registered to vote, which means more people sat at home than voted for either political party.

Jim Grandone

Women, people who didn’t own land, African Americans, Immigrants and even Native Americans had to fight for years to get the right to vote. Because of the desire for universal suffrage, over past the centuries, we have evolved from a representative republic to a democratic republic or some hybrid thereof. It wasn’t easy to expand the right to vote. It took protests, riots and bloodshed. And still, there are those in government who want to make it difficult for us to cast a ballot.

Bear with me for a little history that doesn’t get taught much in schools today.
Although Lincoln’s 1863 Emancipation Proclamation freed the slaves and gave them rights, those rights were eroded after Reconstruction by Jim Crow laws and poll taxes.

Women won the right to vote by the Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution 100 years ago, which passed after women marched and were arrested and beaten in the streets. The Fifteenth Amendment, which was passed in 1870, granted all U.S. citizens the right to vote regardless of race, however, it wasn't until the Snyder Act in 1924 that Native Americans could enjoy the rights granted by this amendment.

Many died fighting for the right of African Americans to vote, which was secured in the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and, even then, in the South and other parts of the USA, African Americans were prevented from voting by various tactics used by powerful people to stay in power. Eighteen-year-old Americans did not get the right to vote until the Twenty-sixth Amendment, which was ratified in 1971. Even after that, they did not prove themselves a political force until 2008.

After all that effort over many years and generations we finally have what amounts to universal suffrage – almost every citizen can register to vote in America. It baffles me that tens of millions did not vote in the last presidential election.


We can conduct all the voter registration drives we want. We can identify voters and survey them for national polls, we can crow about the large numbers of people registered to vote, but if those registered don’t show up at the polling place or cast their vote by mail, then all the polls are wrong and we get a minority government like we have had twice this century.

More than eight in ten Americans think the country is headed in the wrong direction. Just because Illinois is not a battleground stated does not mean your vote doesn’t count. The people who write the laws are all on the ballot this November including members of Congress and some local candidates and referenda.

Now is the time to make your voice heard. I strongly urge you to consider all that has taken place up to this moment in time and make a decision right now that you are going to vote on or before Nov. 3, 2020. Mail-in ballots have been sent out and in person voting is taking place now. Don’t hesitate.

You don’t have to worry about being beaten or killed while casting your vote. Your biggest challenge may be finding a parking spot.

------------------

Jim Grandone is a long-time resident of Edwardsville, Ill. He was the architect of the 'East County...If You Only Knew' marketing campaign promoting the Metro East to businesses in St. Louis in the 1990s. Grandone holds a BA in political science from the University of Illinois at Springfield and was a Coro Fellow and serves on a variety of boards. He lives in Leclaire with his wife, Mary.