US neo-Nazi leader sentenced to seven years in prison

AFP

3 min read
Raymond Duda, FBI Special Agent in Charge in Seattle, speaks as he stands next to a poster that was mailed earlier in the year to the home of Chris Ingalls, an investigative reporter with KING-TV in Seattle, February 26, 2020.
AP / Ted S. Warren 2020 ©Raymond Duda, FBI Special Agent in Charge in Seattle, speaks as he stands next to a poster that was mailed earlier in the year to the home of Chris Ingalls, an investigative reporter with KING-TV in Seattle, February 26, 2020.

'You have been visited by your local Nazis,' says one poster created by Kaleb Cole

A neo-Nazi leader was sentenced to seven years in prison on Tuesday for threatening journalists and activists campaigning against antisemitism, the US Justice Department said.

Kaleb Cole, 25, a leader of the neo-Nazi group Atomwaffen Division, was convicted in the western US state of Washington of mailing threatening communications, cyberstalking, and other charges.

Cole and three other neo-Nazis were arrested in early 2020 in a cross-country sweep against the violent group. The three other Atomwaffen members pleaded guilty and were sentenced already.

According to prosecutors, Cole and the other members of Atomwaffen plotted to intimidate Jewish journalists and journalists of color by mailing threatening posters to their homes.

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"You have been visited by your local Nazis," said one poster created by Cole.

The posters contained threatening images, including a depiction of a hooded figure preparing to throw a Molotov cocktail at a house.

"Threats motivated by religious intolerance are antithetical to American values, even more so when they aim to intimidate journalists and others who are working to expose bigotry in our society," Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke said in a statement.

"The defendant led a multi-state plot by a neo-Nazi group to threaten and intimidate journalists and advocates who were doing important work to expose anti-Semitism around the country."

US Attorney Nick Brown said Cole "repeatedly promoted violence, stockpiled weapons, and organized 'hate camps.'"