Oath Keepers founder pleads not guilty to seditious conspiracy charge

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The founder and leader of the Oath Keepers plead not guilty to charges of seditious conspiracy for his alleged role in the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the right-wing militia group, plead not guilty in a Plano, Texas federal courtroom during a brief appearance where he was in the custody of the U.S. Marshals wearing handcuffs and leg irons, according to Reuters.

Oath Keepers founder, Stewart Rhodes, speaks during the Patriots Day Free Speech Rally in Berkeley, California, April 15, 2017. (REUTERS/Jim Urquhart)

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A prosecutor said at the hearing that the Justice Department will request that Rhodes be detained while he waits for trial. 

“He believes he will be found not guilty,” James Lee Bright, a lawyer for Rhodes, said, adding that he will oppose the request for pretrial detention. “He has no reason to flee. He has no passport. He has nowhere to go.”

Also on Friday, Oath Keeper Edward Vallejo appeared in a Phoenix courtroom to face sedition charges. 

Vallejo did not enter a plea but his lawyer indicated he plans to enter a not

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