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FBI arrests leader of armed group stopping migrants in New Mexico

Yahoo News

TAOS, N.M. (Reuters) – The FBI on Saturday said it had arrested Larry Hopkins, the leader of an armed group that is stopping undocumented migrants after they cross the U.S.-Mexico border into New Mexico.

The arrest came two days after the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) accused the group of illegally detaining migrants and New Mexico’s Democratic Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham ordered an investigation. 

Hopkins, 69, also known as Johnny Horton, was arrested in Sunland Park, New Mexico, on a federal complaint charging him with being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said in a statement.

“We’re not worried about it, he’s going to be cleared,” said Jim Benvie, a spokesman for the United Constitutional Patriots (UCP), blaming his arrest on political pressure from Lujan Grisham.

Hopkins is the “national commander” of the UCP, which has had around half a dozen members camped out on a rotating basis near Sunland Park since late February.

PATRIOTS OR FASCISTS?

The UCP describes itself as a “patriot group” helping U.S. Border Patrol cope with record numbers of Central American families crossing the border to seek asylum.

Dressed in camouflage and carrying rifles, UCP members have helped U.S. Border Patrol detain over 5,600 migrants in the last two months, Benvie said. Videos posted online by the group show members telling migrants to stop, sit down, and wait for agents to arrive. Critics accuse the UCP of impersonating law enforcement.

Crowdfunding sites PayPal and GoFundMe on Friday barred the group, citing policies not to promote hate or violence, after the ACLU called the UCP a “fascist militia.”

“Today’s arrest by the FBI indicates clearly that the rule of law should be in the hands of trained law enforcement officials, not armed vigilantes,” New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas said in a statement of Hopkins’s arrest.

Hopkins was previously arrested in Oregon in 2006 on suspicion of impersonating a police officer and being a felon in possession of a firearm, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.

NO STANDOFFS

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said in a statement it did not support citizens taking law enforcement into their own hands and instead encouraged the public to be its eyes and ears on the border.

Benvie said the UCP was doing just that and had the support of local Border Patrol and police.

Mostly military veterans, UCP members carry weapons for self defense and at no time pointed guns at migrants, as they have been accused of, Benvie said.

Despite having funding sources cut off, Benvie said the group’s online support had swelled since it came under attack this week. Its Facebook followers have more than doubled since Thursday.

Asked what the group would do if told to leave by state police, Benvie said they would probably go and, if they felt the order violated their constitutional rights, sue the state of New Mexico.

“There’s not going to be any standoffs, this isn’t the Bundy Ranch,” Benvie said, in reference to a 2014 armed confrontation in Nevada.

(Reporting by Andrew Hay in Taos, New Mexico; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Christopher Cushing)

https://www.yahoo.com/news/fbi-arrests-leader-u-patriots-stopping-migrants-border-003433598.html

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11 Responses to FBI arrests leader of armed group stopping migrants in New Mexico

  1. KOYOTE says:

    JUST MORE BULLSHIT BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE AMERICAN “VOTER.”
    I KNOW!!! LETS GO HELP “LAW ENFORCEMENT” GET MORE BEANERS IN ‘MUR’CUH!!
    TRUMPS RIGHT! THERE IS NOT ENUFF PEOPLES HERE!!!!

  2. KOYOTE says:

    “federal complaint charging him with being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition”
    NO “FELON” WOULD DO THIS SHIT. I SMELL SOMETHING FISHY…….

  3. Mark Schumacher says:

    “Crowdfunding sites PayPal and GoFundMe on Friday barred the group, citing policies not to promote hate or violence, after the ACLU called the UCP a “fascist militia.””

    These boys out there are doing America a favor, these assholes wanna screw that up?

    Oh yeah?

    Fk you then…who are these idiots anyway? Fkg commies that’s who, why are these asshats allowed to operate then? Fkg racist pigs…

    • Henry Shivley says:

      Mark, I’m confused.
      Whoever in the hell these UCP militia are, they are driving no one back across the border. They are helping the invaders by bringing the border patrol to them so they can get processed into our country. They are aiding and abetting the invasion of our country.
      I think they arrest this guy every year to try to portray the militia as these good guys helping those poor immigrants get to the border patrol safely.
      As far as paypal and gofundme, of course they are communists, so why are they making this big deal out of these traitors helping them facilitate the invasion, is the question that needs to be asked.

      • Mark Schumacher says:

        The fact that they dont allow the funding is what chaps my ass, sure these Patriots arent pushing them back, AS FAR AS WE KNOW, maybe in some cases they are by just being there , encouraging the Mexican invaders by thinking twice about crossing. We dont know the whole story Henry,

        In any event, the fact that they are DENIED FUNDING chaps my ass Fk PayPal and Fk GOFKME

    • Hal Apeeno says:

      Mark,
      I think this UPC militia believe they are doing Trump ‘the orange jesus’ will.
      I got to believe they know that these illegals are being pumped right in through the walmart welcoming receiving/shipping warehouses.
      Of course the ACLJOO gonna get all mixed up in it as well.
      I posted it so you’s guy’s can read between the lines.
      Take care.

      • Mark Schumacher says:

        Well, the FBI arrested this guy for whatever reason, he might have been caught pushing this trash back across the border, we just dont fkg know, I’m taking the high road until I do know. GOFKME AND PAYPAL are both Jew loving commie sites. They are racist, and that’s a goddamn fact.

        Yeah, your right, the US GOVERNMENT are pushing them through, I just want to believe this ARMED group of Patriots down there are doing the right goddamned thing and not just giving these invaders blankets and binkies.

        I know goddamned well, they know better and want these invaders the hell out of here. I just gotta believe that.

        I hear both you and Henry loud and fkg clear, believe me.

        The American National has become the conspiracy theory poster child of the United States and its all bullshit!!

        • Henry Shivley says:

          I’m not just pulling this out of my hat, Mark. I watched one of their representatives state it clearly on Fox News. They are there to “assist the border patrol and make sure the family units are kept safe”. They showed the video of them having the invaders sit down and rest and let them know that the border patrol and the free walmart was on the way. At least that is what one of them said.

          • Mark Schumacher says:

            Well, if that’s the case then I just wasted alot of breath. Goddamnit….cant believe it. Unbelievable…the minute I try and give, just a little, I get fkd, really getting tired of all this bullshit….why are these assholes even down there then? Fking traitors man, why????

            Really man, why the fk are they down there? Whose ass are they trying to kiss? Just dont get it…why the fk are they even armed?

            Fkg unbelievable! What kind of traitor militia is this? I’m sick of the word militia already, fk this…

            I dont watch TV, so I dont see this sht…

  4. Frank says:

    Why wasn’t he arrested by BATFE? They have jurisdiction in gun cases,not the FBI.

  5. Sink says:

    So it is now illegal for law abiding citizens to detain criminals?

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