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Far-right Oath Keepers leader gets 18 years in prison for US Capitol riot

The leader of a far-right militia has been sentenced to 18 years in prison for his role in the US Capitol riot.
 
Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the Oath Keepers, was convicted on charges of seditious conspiracy and other crimes.
 
Rhodes stayed outside the Capitol on January 6, 2021, but coordinated with militia members who stormed the building.
 
The sentence is the longest yet given to a Capitol rioter.
 
Prosecutors had asked for 25 years.
 
Rhodes was also convicted last year of obstruction of an official proceeding and tampering with documents or proceedings in one of the highest-profile Capitol riot trials.
 
At a hearing on Thursday, the militia leader showed little remorse, claiming he was a political prisoner and insisting the Oath Keepers only intended to protect other protesters.
 
Judge Amit Mehta rejected those claims and expressed concern about Rhodes' violent rhetoric, including a threat to hang former US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
 
The sentence given to Rhodes is the longest handed out so far for the riot, where thousands of supporters of Donald Trump who objected to the result of the 2020 presidential election stormed the US legislature.
 
Rhodes, a former US Army paratrooper and Yale-educated lawyer, founded the Oath Keepers in 2009.


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