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Assistant U.S. attorney bails on Aryan Brotherhood case over ‘security reasons’

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An assistant U.S. attorney in Houston sent an email on Tuesday explaining that he’s backing out of a racketeering case against members of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas due to concerns about his security, The Dallas Morning News reported.

The revelation was contained in a short email sent by assistant U.S. attorney Jay Hileman to criminal defense lawyer Richard O. Ely II, the News noted. Houston attorney Katherine Scardino told Talking Points Memo that the decision was made for “security reasons.”

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The Aryan Brotherhood of Texas, known for employing extreme violence against enemies and even fellow members who refuse orders, has it out for a key witness in the case: a former Brotherhood leader named Terry Sillers, who has been in police custody since June 2011.

Investigators looking for clues in the recent slayings of two Kaufman County prosecutors are looking into a possible connection to the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas, which vowed in November to kill members of the law enforcement community that were involved in obtaining a massive set of federal indictments against 34 individuals, brought about in part by Sillers.

Hileman’s withdrawal also comes just a day after Kaufman County named prosecutor Brandi Fernandez the new district attorney to replace her murdered predecessor, virtually guaranteeing that tensions will remain high in Kaufman County for the foreseeable future.

Members charged in the indictments stand accused of three murders, numerous assaults and attempted murders, drug charges and even kidnappings. Details from the indictments are chilling, The Daily Beast’s Christine Pelisek noted. In one allegation, gang members are said to have killed an initiate to send a message to other new recruits, returning with a severed finger as a trophy. They’re also accused of numerous acts of brutal violence, including using blowtorches to fry gang tattoos off a member who refused an order.

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However, it’s still unclear if there is a Kaufman County connection, despite the county’s involvement in a task force that issued indictments against the gang. Investigators also spoke to another person of interest in the case this week, a former Kaufman County judge who was arrested for theft and disbarred. “I’ve cooperated with law enforcement,” former judge Eric Williams told the NBC affiliate in Dallas. “I certainly wish them the best in bringing justice to this incredibly egregious act.”
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Photo: Ryan Rodrick Beiler / Shutterstock.com.

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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‘There’s an awful lot of really good Republicans out there’: Joe Biden at Cape Cod fundraiser

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Former Vice President Joe Biden defended Republican lawmakers in DC as "decent people" during a campaign fundraiser held at Cape Cod.

"There’s an awful lot of really good Republicans out there," Biden argued, according to Washington Post reporter Matt Viser.

"I get in trouble for saying that with Democrats, but...every time we ever got in trouble with our administration, remember who got sent up to Capitol Hill to fix it? Me," he said.

”Because they know I respect the other team. I do. They’re decent people," Biden claimed. "They ran because they care about things, but they’re intimidated right now.”

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Neo-Nazi ‘Atomwaffen Division’ holding live-fire militia training exercises at ‘The Base’: report

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One sign of the growing white nationalist crisis in America is a new outreach effort for paramilitary training.

"A neo-Nazi group focused on providing paramilitary-style training to far-right extremists has been conducting a massive recruitment drive and claims to have already conducted live-fire training with its members," Vice News reports.

"The Base, which is connected to extreme-right groups the Atomwaffen Division and the Feuerkrieg Division, has been promoting its growth on social media with photos announcing its presence in major cities across North America, including New York, Los Angeles, and Seattle, and in Europe, South Africa, and Australia," Vice reported. "The images often include a small contingent (typically one to three) of masked, camo-clad men holding weapons standing in front of The Base's flag, a black flag with three white lines running down the centre."

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Oklahoma police searching for man who shot Taco Bell employee in dispute over the drive-thru

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Police are searching for a man who allegedly shot a Taco Bell employee early Saturday morning.

"The employee was shot in the leg after asking the customer to pull forward in the drive-thru," KFOR-TV reported Saturday. "The customer argued, but eventually pulled forward, and that’s when he pulled out a gun and shot the employee."

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