Thursday, October 14, 2021

Alabama-connected Ali Alexander, organizer of a rally that turned into assault on U.S. Capitol, faces subpoena from House committee investigating Jan. 6

Ali Alexander

The Congressional Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol has issued a subpoena for Alabama-connected right-wing extremist Ali (Akbar) Alexander.  From a report at Politico:

The Jan. 6 select committee on Thursday (10/7) subpoenaed Ali Alexander, a key figure behind the “Stop the Steal” movement that aided former President Donald Trump’s effort to overturn the 2020 election.

The subpoena, one of three issued Thursday by the House panel investigating the Capitol attack, targets a divisive hard-line conservative who had regular communication with Trump allies, including some congressional Republicans, in the crucial weeks after President Joe Biden's win.

“The rally on the Capitol grounds on January 6th, like the rally near the White House that day, immediately preceded the violent attack on the seat of our democracy,” Chair Bennie Thompson said in a statement on the committee's third round of subpoenas, referring to the "Stop the Steal"-sponsored event that metastasized into a riot.

“Over the course of that day, demonstrations escalated to violence and protestors became rioters. The Select Committee needs to understand all the details about the events that came before the attack, including who was involved in planning and funding them. We expect these witnesses to cooperate fully with our probe.”

The subpoenas go well beyond Alexander, who has a criminal record and once was known as Ali Akbar:

In addition to Alexander, the subpoenas target Nathan Martin, another organizer of the pre-insurrection rally, and the Stop the Steal organization. A previous round of 11 subpoenas targeted other Trump allies who helped organize various events in the run-up to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. And four close Trump associates — including former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows — are facing a  subpoena deadline to turn over documents to the committee.

Martin and Alexander have two weeks, until Oct. 21, to respond to the panel’s demand for documents. The committee set an Oct. 28 deposition for Martin and a Oct. 29 deposition for Alexander, while the group Stop the Steal has one week to produce documents.

Martin confirmed receipt of the subpoena but declined to comment.

Alexander said in a since-deleted video that he worked with Reps. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) and Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) to attempt to use Congress’ Jan. 6 session certifying Biden’s victory as a chance to pressure lawmakers to overturn the electoral results.

“We four schemed up to put maximum pressure on Congress while they were voting,” Alexander said in the video.

Alexander reportedly has been in hiding since Jan. 6, so it is unknown if he actually will appear before the committee:

 It’s unclear if any of the subpoena recipients intend to comply with the committee’s orders.

Trump has directed Meadows and other close aides to defy the committee’s demands, a likely precursor to an intense legal battle to force them to cooperate. Trump himself intends to block the National Archives from sending his former White House’s records to the committee, which promises to ignite another significant court fight.

Some watchdog and civil rights groups had raised concerns about the panel’s plans to seek information from those related to organizing the rallies. The Project on Government Oversight sent a letter to the committee on Tuesday urging them to use caution with individuals’ private data.

“While claims of election fraud were baseless and have seriously undermined public faith in our democracy, false and grossly offensive speech is still constitutionally protected. Accordingly, we urge the committee to be especially cautious in its demands for records that could implicate First Amendment rights or set precedent for future demands that chill First Amendment-protected activities,” wrote POGO executive director Danielle Brian.


Anonymous said...

Alexander was filled with bravery and bluster on Jan. 6. Where did all of that go? Now, he's running like a stuck pick.

legalschnauzer said...

#10:18 -- Akbar, like a lot of "tough guys," probably runs out of bravery when accountability time shows up. A real "tough guy" would march right up to the committee, provide the requested documents, answer quesions, and take whatever is coming his way. But not Akbar.

Anonymous said...

Gotta wonder if Baron Coleman now regrets aligning himself with Akbar.

legalschnauzer said...

Good question, @10:22. Akbar's background in thuggery was well-known, so his actions on Jan. 6, and since then, should not be a surprise to Mr. Coleman, Esq.

legalschnauzer said...

Per Raw Story --
Headline: US Marshals may be called to round up former Trump aides who disobey Jan. 6 subpoenas: House investigator

A member of the U.S. House select committee explained how Donald Trump's allies might be rounded up and arrested if they continued to defy congressional subpoenas in the Jan. 6 investigation.

Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL) appeared on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," where she called for fines or jail time for former Trump advisers who flout orders for their testimony and documents related to the insurrection, and she revealed what questions the committee had for former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and others served with the subpoenas.

"I want to know how much planning was involved, who was involved in the planning, who funded it, how they -- what their intent was when they came into that day, and then what they knew as that day unfolded and the safety and security of people like the vice president and members of Congress were at risk, [and] what they did, either to respond or not respond on that occasion," Murphy said.

If those individuals don't show up for their scheduled testimony, Murphy said they could be taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals Service.

legalschnauzer said...

Per American Military News --
Headline: US Marshals may round up Bannon, Trump aides subpoenaed by Jan. 6 commission, says commission member

A member of the House Jan. 6 Commission established to investigate the storming of the United States Capitol has called for the U.S. Marshals this week to round up former Trump adviser Steve Bannon and other former Trump officials who ignore subpoenas demanding they testify before the committee. The committee announced on Thursday they would hold Bannon in contempt.

“I would recommend the full extent of consequences — jail time, fines. We need to make sure that these people understand that this is not acceptable,” Florida Rep. Stephanie Murphy, a Democrat, said during an appearance on MSNBC’s Morning Joe on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, Mr. Bannon’s lawyer wrote a letter to the commission explaining that his client will not testify or provide documents until an agreement is reached between the committee and Mr. Trump on executive privilege, or a court gives guidance on the situation.

Anonymous said...

Can they serve him by serving his law enforcement handler? (asking for a friend!)

legalschnauzer said...

@10:25 -- Hah! Your friend asks a good question. It does seem as if young Mr. Akbar has a handler/protector of some sort. (BTW, I don't think Akbar is all that young at this point. He's certainly old enough to know better than to pull some of the excremen5 he deals in).

Anonymous said...

What kind of handler? This type?

Or the other type?

legalschnauzer said...

Links often don't seem to work in our comment section, so here is key info from The Hill article cited above:

A Capitol Police officer is facing two counts of obstruction of justice for allegedly trying to help someone avoid being prosecuted for the Jan. 6 riot by telling them to change Facebook posts to indicate they were not in the Capitol at the time of the riot.

The Capitol Police officer, Michael Angelo Riley, had been with the department for more than 25 years when he was indicted for allegedly helping someone, referred to as “Person 1” in court documents obtained by Law & Crime.

The court documents allege that Person 1 had accepted a friend request from the Capitol Police officer despite the fact that they did not know each other. Person 1 had posed commentary and footage that indicated Person 1 was inside the Capitol during Jan. 6.

Documents allege Riley identified himself as an officer, and said he agreed with the person's political stance.

“Hey [Person 1], im a capitol police officer who agrees with your political stance. Take down the part about being in the building they are currently investigating and everyone who was in the building is going to [be] charged. Just looking out!" Riley wrote to the person, according to court documents.

The documents allege that Person 1 then sent several videos to Riley that indicated Person 1 was inside and outside of the Capitol. The documents claim Riley responded on Facebook, saying "I get it ... it was a total shit show!!! Just wanted to give you a heads up. Im glad you got out of there unscathed We had over 50 officers hurt, some pretty bad.”

legalschnauzer said...

More from The Hill --

"The only thing I can see is if you went in the building and they have proof you will be charged. You could always articulate that you had no where to go, but thats for court,” Riley allegedly said after the individual claimed he did not believe he behaved inappropriately.

Riley later on Friday is expected to appear in court, according to The Associated Press. The news outlet noted it was not immediately clear if Riley had an attorney representing him.

Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger said in a statement that the obstruction of justice charges “is a very serious allegation.”

“The Department was notified about this investigation several weeks ago. Upon his arrest, the officer was placed on administrative leave pending the completion of the case. The USCP’s Office of Professional Responsibility will then open an administrative investigation,” Manger said.

Anonymous said...

"In a bizarre moment in his fundraising pitch, Alexander claimed that he was being targeted by the supernatural: "Witches and wiccans are putting hexes and curses on us."