enrique tarrio sentencing

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Truth Social users shift, begin backing ex-Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio as Jan. 6 sentencing looms

Trump’s base previously bashed Tarrio as a ‘fed.’

 

Katherine Huggins

Tech

Users on Truth Social are rallying in support of Henry “Enrique” Tarrio, the ex-Proud Boys leader awaiting sentencing for his role in instigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

Prosecutors are seeking 33 years for Tarrio, who was convicted of recruiting his followers to attack the U.S. Capitol and disrupt the peaceful transfer of American presidential power.

His sentencing was originally slated for Wednesday but was delayed until next week after the judge hearing the case became sick, according to the Associated Press.

Several users on the pro-speech social media platform founded by former President Donald Trump previously blasted Tarrio as a Federal Bureau of Investigation informant as part of a wider right-wing conspiracy theory attributing Jan. 6 to government actors.

“Tarrio is/was an FBI informant. Same with the leader of the oath keepers,” wrote one user two weeks ago. “You all can deny it till the day you die!”

Reuters reported that Tarrio “has a past as an informer for federal and local law enforcement” including working undercover in cases involving drugs, gambling, and human smuggling. There is no evidence he has worked with authorities since 2014, according to the report.

But despite past skepticism of Tarrio in right-wing online circles, as his sentencing approaches, the tone on Truth Social appears to have shifted.

“[Department of Justice] has been weaponized to make citizens like Tarrio the example of what happens if you think differently than the government and media want you to think,” one user wrote Wednesday.

“The Department of INJUSTICE,” quipped another.

Another person expressed hope that Trump will return to office and “release our J’6’rs.”

“Remind us what did he do to get arrested. Just because he is a proud boy?” wrote another user. “When Trump gets elected he should pardon everyone of the illegitimate committee charged.”

The 33-year-long prison sentence prosecutors are seeking is 15 years longer than the harshest sentence anyone has been handed down so far in the DOJ’s Jan. 6 prosecution. That sentence went to Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes, whose sentencing judge dubbed him “an ongoing threat and peril to this country.”

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