Biden Admin Vows To Hunt Down 'All' Jan. 6 Suspects - Even Those Who Weren't There That Day

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by Tyler Durden
Wednesday, Jan 10, 2024 - 12:00 AM

Authored by Tom Ozimek via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

The Biden administration has pledged to continue to pursue and convict all people who broke the law in the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol incident, including those who never entered the building or who weren’t even present at the U.S. Capitol that day.

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland speaks, as officials including U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia Matthew Graves (center), listen, in Washington on May 4, 2023. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Prosecutors have, to date, charged over 1,250 people with various crimes related to Jan. 6, ranging from being present on Capitol grounds without authorization, to assault of a police officer, to seditious conspiracy.

Former President Donald Trump has said on several occasions that he thinks Jan. 6 detainees are being mistreated by the Biden administration and has vowed to issue pardons for many of them.

President Trump rallied his base in Iowa on the eve of the Jan. 6 anniversary.

The J6 hostages, I call them. Nobody has been treated ever in history so badly as those people,” President Trump said at a rally in Iowa on the eve of the Jan. 6 anniversary, where he pledged to pardon a “large portion” of imprisoned Jan. 6 defendants.

President Joe Biden, by contrast, last week celebrated the jailing of Jan. 6 defendants in a speech to mark the third anniversary of the Capitol breach.

Collectively, to date, they have been sentenced to more than 840 years in prison,” he said.

“And what has Trump done? Instead of calling them ‘criminals,’ he’s called these ... insurrectionists ‘patriots.' And he promised to pardon them if he returns to office,” he added.

‘All Jan. 6 Perpetrators’ To Be Targeted

Off the campaign trail, the country’s top prosecutor has made clear that the DOJ under President Biden has no intention of letting Jan. 6 participants off easy—including those who weren’t even there that day.

“We have initiated prosecutions and secured convictions across a wide range of criminal conduct on January 6, as well as in the days and weeks leading up to the attack,” Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a speech on Friday.

Prosecutors have, to date, secured over 890 convictions in connection to the Jan. 6 incident, with Mr. Garland vowing to press ahead to cast the DOJ dragnet widely.

Our work continues,” he said. “As I said before, the Justice Department will hold all January 6 perpetrators, at any level, accountable under the law—whether they were present that day or were otherwise criminally responsible for the assault on our democracy.

“We are following the facts and the law, where they lead,” he added.

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland announces the appointment of Attorney David Weiss as special counsel in the ongoing probe of Hunter Biden, the son of President Joe Biden, on Aug. 11, 2023. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

‘Prosecutorial Discretion’

Nearly two-thirds of the 890-plus convicted Jan. 6 participants have received some time in prison.

The longest prison sentence—22 years—was handed down to Enrique Tarrio, the former Proud Boys national chairman who was convicted of seditious conspiracy for allegedly plotting with others to forcibly prevent the transfer of power between then-President Trump and then-President-elect Joe Biden.

Henry "Enrique" Tarrio, then leader of The Proud Boys, holds a U.S. flag during a protest showing support for Cubans demonstrating against their government, in Miami, Florida on July 16, 2021. (EVA MARIE UZCATEGUI/AFP via Getty Images)

Dozens of Jan. 6 detainees are still languishing in jail awaiting trial three years after the Capitol incident.

Matt Graves, the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia who is leading the ongoing Jan. 6 prosecutions alongside special counsel Jack Smith, said last week that the DOJ had so far focused its prosecutorial efforts mostly on those who entered the Capitol or took part in violent acts in and around the building.

“We have used our prosecutorial discretion to primarily focus on those who enter the building or those who engaged in violent or corrupt conduct on Capitol grounds,” Mr. Graves said.

But if a person knowingly entered a restricted area without authorization, they have already committed a federal crime,” he continued.

“Make no mistake, thousands of people occupied an area that they were not authorized to be present in,” he added.

Supporters of President Donald Trump protest at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. (Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images)

In light of Mr. Garland’s remarks that the DOJ would continue to hunt down “all Jan. 6 perpetrators” whether or not they were at the Capitol that day, Mr. Graves’s statements reinforce the view that prosecutors intend to expand their dragnet to people who never entered the building—or weren’t even there that day.

‘Cast Their Net Far Too Broadly’

But while the Biden administration seems intent on broadening its hunt of Jan. 6 suspects, a former attorney general said he thinks things have already gone too far.

Bill Barr, who served as attorney general under President Trump, told Fox News in a recent interview that he believes some people involved in the Jan. 6 incident—like those who attacked police and broke into the Capitol building—deserve to be punished.

However, Mr. Barr said he believes the DOJ has already cast its Jan. 6 prosecutorial net too widely.

“There were people that should have been prosecuted,” Mr. Barr said. “But I think they cast their net far too broadly.”

He said the DOJ under President Biden “has been hounding people that really, you know, just walked into open doors in the Capitol and hung around.”

“I think they just took it too far,” he said. “But that being said, I don’t minimize what happened up there. While I don’t think it was an insurrection, it clearly was a shameful episode and some of the people involved should be prosecuted.”

Attorney General Bill Barr and justice officials hold a press conference at the Justice Department in Washington on Jan, 13, 2020. (Charlotte Cuthbertson/The Epoch Times)

Meanwhile, on the same day that the interview with Mr. Barr aired, the FBI announced that it had arrested three “January 6 fugitives,” individuals who were indicted for various alleged crimes committed three years ago at the U.S. Capitol, including assault and resisting arrest, but failed to show up at trial.