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Wed Jul 17, 2019, 07:40 PM

Prosecutors seek prison terms for Virginia rally attackers

Source: Associated Press

Prosecutors seek prison terms for Virginia rally attackers

By MICHAEL KUNZELMAN

Hatred for Jews, blacks and feminists motivated three members of a white supremacist group to attack counterprotesters at a rally for far-right extremists in Virginia, federal prosecutors argue in seeking stricter sentences for the men this week.

Justice Department prosecutors recommend prison sentences ranging from 30 months to 46 months for Rise Above Movement members Benjamin Daley, Michael Miselis and Thomas Gillen, according to a court filing Monday. Each faces up to five years in prison when U.S. District Judge Norman Moon sentences them Friday.

The prosecutors said a “hate crime motivation enhancement” should be applied to their sentences. That enhancement would increase the recommended penalty for each defendant under sentencing guidelines, but the judge isn’t bound by those guidelines.

Defense attorneys are seeking more lenient sentences for their clients, who pleaded guilty to conspiring to riot at the August 2017 white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Prosecutors say members of the California-based group engaged in other racist and anti-Semitic activity before the violence that erupted at the “Unite the Right” rally. Monday’s court filing includes photographs of Rise Above Movement members gathering on a beach to burn books, including “The Diary of Anne Frank” and “Schindler’s List,” and disrupting a “white privilege” workshop in Santa Monica, California, sponsored by the Committee for Racial Justice.

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Read more: https://apnews.com/2aed03c4c7c24d578fc9fc8db4c9e6a1

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