SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 29 January 2022, Saturday |

Proud Boys leader freed from Washington jail, served time for burning banner at Black church

Enrique Tarrio, the head of the right-wing Proud Boys gang, was freed from jail on Friday after serving four months and one week for burning a Black Lives Matter flag at a historic African American church in Washington in December 2020.

Tarrio was among a group of Proud Boys that stole the banner on December 12, 2020, during a protest in Washington, D.C. According to Tarrio’s subsequent statements, he then lit it on fire. In July, he pled guilty, was sentenced in August, and began serving his prison sentence in September.

Tarrio did not take part in the deadly Jan. 6, 2021 riots at the U.S. Capitol. He was arrested when he arrived in Washington two days before the failed bid to prevent Congress’ certification of Democrat Joe Biden’s November 2020 election win over then-President Donald Trump, a Republican.

The FBI has said his January 2021 arrest was to try to pre-empt the events of Jan. 6 when several other members of the Proud Boys were taken into custody.

Those members of the right-wing group face charges including obstruction of law enforcement, destruction of government property and conspiracy.