Enrique Tarrio, the head of the far-right organization Proud Boys, has been charged with seditious conspiracy in connection with his alleged participation in plotting the assault on the US Capitol last year. In protest of President Joe Biden’s win, 2,000-2,500 supporters of former US President Donald Trump invaded the Capitol Building in January 2021. Enrique Tarrio and four other Proud Boys members were charged, along with members of numerous other far-right political parties, for allegedly seeking to change election results.
The assault killed five people and injured many more, with four rioters and one police officer killed on the spot. According to CBS, at least nine cops who responded to the incident committed themselves as a result of their injuries and anguish in the aftermath.
Here are *some* of the Republicans who’ve gleefully met & mugged with indicted seditionist Proud Boy Enrique Tarrio.
Feel free to share widely. 👀 pic.twitter.com/2iFpU2XDw7
— Nick Knudsen 🇺🇸🇺🇦 (@NickKnudsenUS) June 6, 2022
Who is Enrique Tarrio?
Enrique Tarrio was born in Little Havana, a largely Cuban American neighborhood in Miami, Florida, in 1984 or 1985, according to the Miami New Times. Tarrio, unlike the majority of the Proud Boys, is of Afro-Cuban heritage. Tarrio, then 20, was sentenced to community service and three years probation for stealing in 2004. According to Reuters, his background as a petty criminal led to him becoming an informant for several American law enforcement organizations. Tarrio’s attorneys informed a federal court in 2014 that he had supplied police with information on various incidents, including narcotics smuggling, unlawful gaming, and human trafficking.
According to the Miami New Times, Enrique Tarrio joined the Proud Boys in 2017 after being recruited while assisting at an event for notorious right-wing speaker Milo Yiannopoulos. Enrique Tarrio rose through the ranks of the Proud Boys due to his alleged participation in a number of controversial and violent political rallies, including 2017 Unite the Right white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, which resulted in the deaths of one counter-protester and two state troopers.
According to Vox, Tarrio had distinguished himself as a fourth-degree member of the Proud Boys by 2018, a distinction that can only be obtained by carrying out violence for the organization. He allegedly attacked a member of ANTIFA, a rival left-wing group with whom the Proud Boys often conflict.
Enrique Tarrio was elected head of the organization on November 29, 2018. The Proud Boys were accused of multiple conflicts with leftist organizations during the 2022 Black Lives Matter marches. Enrique Tarrio was also detained in relation to a protest in which right-wing militants allegedly burned Black Lives Matter merchandise seized from a church.
Despite being linked with white nationalist organizations, he does not identify as a fascist or racist, noting his status as a minority in America, according to Insider.
“I oppose white supremacy.” I condemn racism. I oppose fascism. I oppose communism and any other -ism that discriminates against individuals based on their ethnicity, religion, culture, or skin color.”
Members of the Proud Boys and other far-right organizations invaded the US Capitol in January 2021. Tarrio was not there during the incident, according to CNN, since he had been jailed and ordered by officials to stay away from Washington, D.C. Prosecutors, on the other hand, accuse him of leading his supporters to the region.
The Fallout from the Capitol Attack
Enrique Tarrio’s career as an informant was revealed in the same month as the Capitol assault. The organization splintered as a result, according to the Daily Beast. According to the site, other Proud Boy members lambasted Tarrio in a statement made over the private messaging service Telegram.
According to the statement:
“There has been a failure to pursue disciplinary procedures (as a result of Enrique Tarrio’s activities), which has threatened our brothers’ safety and the integrity of our brotherhood.”
I see Enrique Tarrio, leader of the Proud Boys was just charged with seditious conspiracy. I was locked up with Henry (Enrique) in the Feds at Pensacola.We were on same work detail and became close friends, right up until I found out he was a rat. Here’s my last text with him lol pic.twitter.com/jgswKiHODB
— Johnny Provolone🤌🏼 (@567HudsonSt) June 6, 2022
Tarrio faced many accusations in 2021, including vandalism, hate crimes, and possession of high-capacity weapons magazines. In July of that year, he pled guilty to property destruction and ownership of the magazines, earning him a 155-day jail term. Tarrio now faces up to 20 years in jail after prosecutors accused him of seditious conspiracy. Other famous far-right activists indicted include 11 leaders of the Oath Keepers, a far-right militia organization. According to the BBC, more than 860 individuals face riot-related charges in 48 states.