Two men convicted last year of carrying firearms in the area of the Philadelphia Convention Center during the city’s 2020 vote count were granted immediate parole, The Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
Joshua Macias, 44, and Antonio Lamotta, 63, (both of Virginia) were convicted last fall on weapons charges, the report said.
Prosecutors had sought three-year sentences for the men, but Common Pleas Court Judge Lucretia Clemons sentenced them to 11 ½ to 23 months in jail but placed them on immediate parole, according to the report. Their parole will be followed by at least two years of probation.
Macias and Lamotta are barred from owning guns while on probation.
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“That means I do not want to see you on social media with a gun. I don’t want to see you in a car with a gun. There are no guns while you are on my supervision. I do that with every single gun case that comes before me,” Clemons told them, according to CNN.
The two men were accused of driving to the City of Brotherly Love in a Hummer filled with loaded handguns, an assault-style rifle and ammunition.
They brought the weapons to the Center City on Nov. 5, 2020 in support of former President Donald Trump’s baseless claims of election fraud, according to the report.
Attorneys for the two defendants argued that their clients were targeted for holding conservative political views in a Democratic party stronghold.
Attorney William J. Brennan, who represents Macias, described the prosecutor’s case as being “stenched up with politics,” the report said.
Assistant District Attorney Jeffrey Palmer said politics played no role in the prosecution of the two men, according to the report.