5 Oath Keepers Go On Trial For ‘Seditious Conspiracy’ In J6 Case

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 06:  Police try to hold back protesters who  gather storm the Capitol and halt a joint session of the 117th Congress on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

At a glance

  • The founder of the Oath Keepers and four associates are on trial in the Capitol attack on charges that include seditious conspiracy — a rarely used Civil War-era accusation that strikes to the heart of what prosecutors say happened that day.
  • Stewart Rhodes and his followers are the first Jan. 6 defendants to stand trial on such a charge for what prosecutors say was not a suddenly ignited riot but a coordinated plot to stop the transfer of presidential power.
  • The stakes are high for the Justice Department, which hasn’t tried a seditious conspiracy case in a decade and hasn’t won a guilty verdict since the 1995 prosecution of Islamic militants who plotted to bomb New York City landmarks.

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