Judge: Proud Boys leader should be freed pending riot trial

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A federal judge ruled Friday that a Philadelphia man described by prosecutors as a leader of the far-right Proud Boys should be released to house arrest while he awaits trial on charges related to the U.S. Capitol riots.

However, U.S. Magistrate Judge Richard Lloret immediately stayed that ruling regarding Zach Rehl pending a review of the decision by a judge in Washington.

The ruling came after a brief hearing in Philadelphia in which Rehl’s lawyer, Shaka Johnson, claimed the charges against his client were motivated by his political views — not his actions on Jan. 6. Rehl, 35, faces six counts, including: conspiracy, obstruction of an official proceeding and destruction of government property.

Prosecutors said Rehl poses a danger to the community, saying he was charged due to “his actions and the people he led,” not his opinions.

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