Adrienna DiCioccio felt intimidated by the Fed
As prosecutors prepare to hear the case of the Jan. 6 rioting conspiracy against members of the far-right Proud Boys group, one of the accused says the government is trying to intimidate defense witnesses.
In a filing filed Thursday, attorneys for Ethan Nordean described an attempt by government prosecutors to “threaten or intimidate defense witnesses”. attorney David B Smith wrote this during a December 2 hearing before a US District Judge Timothy Kelly“The attorney had indicated that he wanted to add ‘John Does’ to defendant Nordean’s witness list because there was reason to believe that the government would attempt to threaten or intimidate defense witnesses in order to prevent them from testifying in court or to change.”
Smith’s attempt to keep witnesses anonymous appears to be based on an affidavit Adrienna DiCioccioa right organizer and political activist with links to the Proud Boys and donald trump allies Roger Stone.
“I’m a stay-at-home mom of a 17-month-old son,” DiCioccio said in her statement. “I know Ethan Nordean through personal and professional connections.”
DiCioccio says she was “present at an Airbnb residence in Washington, DC, on the evening of January 5, 2021 where Ethan and others were gathered.” She does not specify who was still in the rental at the time.
She claims that when FBI agents questioned her about the Jan. 6 attack in September 2021, “one of the agents stated that the government wanted to keep her meeting with me ‘discreet.'” She initially didn’t answer for a second Requests for an interview, but she “eventually relented” and agreed to speak with investigators on November 4, 2021.
According to DiCioccio:
During this second interview, the agents and prosecutors asked about my recollections of the evening of January 5 at the Airbnb residence where Ethan and others were gathered. I don’t remember the exact words I used, but I generally informed the interviewers that I disagreed with the allegation that Ethan and the others in his group were planning violence or an attack on the Capitol on January 6th . I generally informed the agents and prosecutors that, as someone involved in planning peaceful events with the Proud Boys in the past, I disagreed with their suggestion that Ethan and others at the Airbnb were plotting violence in DC the next day
DiCioccio, who said in her statement that she was “surprised” that two prosecutors escorted the FBI agents to her home that day, paints the picture of a vulnerable mother who was the target of the government’s fear tactics.
“Towards the end of the interview, I could see that the prosecutors weren’t happy with what I was telling them,” says DiCioccio. “The conversation got heated. My son sat on my lap for most of the interview. The government interviewers used rhetoric like, ‘You don’t want to lose him.’”
DiCioccio said one of the prosecutors stated that she faces charges of “obstruction of justice” and “trespassing” in connection with Jan. 6.
“I remember the prosecutor’s suggestion that I would be charged came after I told the group that I disagreed with their questions, implying that the group at the Airbnb on January 5 was planning to do that Attack the Capitol or commit violence on January 6th. ‘ DiCioccio says in her statement. She added that she felt she “would be charged if [she] did not give the government what it wanted.”
DiCioccio stated that the agents called after the interview and attempted to tone down their perceived message.
“The agent added that I shouldn’t worry that if charged, it would be a misdemeanor and not an obstruction of justice,” DiCioccio said. “The agent referred to a certain unnamed January 6 defendant whose disability disability charges were dropped for a misdemeanor and said that would be the case for me if I was charged. The agent added that they would not arrest me and would make it a public business.
“After hearing the prosecutor’s testimony about the charges, I was scared for myself and for my son,” DiCioccio added.
According to Nordean’s filing, prosecutors said the notion that the “[g]The government has somehow pressured witnesses, threatened witnesses, gone to witnesses when represented by a lawyer without a lawyer present, all of this is just categorically wrong. The motion also said the government described Nordean’s version of events as “inaccurate and incomplete”.
The filing notes that prosecutors provided Smith with their transcript of the DiCioccio interview. Smith describes this account as “consistent with, or at least not inconsistent with, the testimony of the witness.”
Nordean faces charges along with co-defendants Joseph Bigges, Zachary Rehl, Dominic Pezzolaand leader of the proud boys Enrique Tarrio with seditious conspiracy related to the January 6 attack on the US Capitol. According to prosecutors, Tarrio created a “special chapter” of the Proud Boys — the “Ministry of Self Defense,” or MSOD — and used that group to coordinate actions on Jan. 6, when scores of Trump supporters overwhelmed law enforcement in the Capitol and broke in the building, as confirmed by Congress Joe BidenElection victory 2020.
The rioters’ break-in brought the process of Congress to a halt, forcing lawmakers and staffers to either evacuate or shelter for hours.
A sixth defendant Karl Donohoepleaded guilty in April and is cooperating with the government.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office did not immediately respond to Law&Crime’s request for comment, and the federal filing did not indicate a corresponding filing at the time of publication.
the proud boys fixed Described as a hate group by the Southern Policy Law Center, is a self-proclaimed “Western chauvinist” group known for engaging in political intimidation and street fighting. During a 2020 presidential debate, then-President Trump refused to directly denounce the group, instead urging its members to “stand back and watch.”
According to the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 riots, members of the Proud Boys were among the first to identify and attack a security weakness on the Capitol site.
Tarrio is not charged with breaking into the Capitol that day, and prosecutors have admitted he actually left the District of Columbia at the time, in accordance with a court order following his Jan. 4 arrest, on charges of stealing a Black Lives -Matter banner previously burned by the historically Black Asbury United Methodist Church in December 2020. At the time of his arrest, it was also determined that he was in possession of two high-capacity firearm magazines, which violates DC law.
However, prosecutors also say Tarrio did not leave the area immediately after his arrest, and documentary footage from that night shows him meeting the Oath Keepers founder Steward Rhodes in an underground car park. Rhodes was recently convicted on the same inflammatory conspiracy charges leveled against Tarrio and his co-defendants, which carries a possible 20-year prison sentence.
Tarrio has also criticized the government’s treatment of defense witnesses, arguing in a recent motion to dismiss that prosecutors’ decision not to grant immunity to one of his witnesses constituted a violation of his constitutional rights, and nothing less than a dismissal justifies him.
As in the Tarrio case, some defense witnesses in the Rhodes trial faced criminal charges. Meanwhile the government Prosecution goes on: About 900 people have been charged and about half of them have pleaded guilty. Dozens have been convicted of crimes in court and so far six people have either pleaded guilty to seditious conspiracy or have been convicted of seditious conspiracy, widely regarded as the most serious charge yet.
The case of the Proud Boys riotous conspiracy is scheduled to begin December 19 before Judge Kelly, a Trump appointee.
Read Nordean’s filing here and DiCioccio’s statement here.
[Image of Nordean via FBI court filing. Image of DiCioccio via YouTube screengrab.]
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https://lawandcrime.com/u-s-capitol-breach/proud-boys-member-facing-seditious-conspiracy-charge-accuses-government-of-intimidating-defense-witness/ Adrienna DiCioccio felt intimidated by the Fed