Feds serve right-wing Parler a warrant for data on Proud Boys: report
Prpud Boy Enrique Tarrio (Photo by Chandan Khanna of AFP)

On Monday, The Daily Beast reported that new court filings reveal federal investigators served search warrants to Parler, a right-wing social media platform billed as a Twitter alternative, as part of their investigation into Enrique Tarrio and other members of the Proud Boys.

"A new evidence list in the Proud Boys January 6 trial shows that feds executed search warrants on Parler, the right-wing social media site, in connection with leader Enrique Tarrio and other Proud Boys who hyped up calls for violence ahead of the Capitol attack," reported Kelly Weill. "Five Proud Boys — including Tarrio, the group’s former leader — are each facing nine or more charges for their alleged actions on Jan. 6. Prosecutors say the group engaged in seditious conspiracy when they allegedly plotted to storm the Capitol and prevent lawmakers from certifying President Joe Biden’s election."

According to the report, the filing suggests a broader, "sweeping" investigation into the activities of the Proud Boys, a self-styled "Western Chauvinist" group known for its links to white supremacists and its violent street brawls.

"Some of the defendants have fought to block evidence in the case, arguing that internal Proud Boys documents are irrelevant or that they paint the group in a bad light," said the report. "In filings late last week, prosecutors argued that it’s the Proud Boys’ own fault if they look bad in the internal messages, pointing to a defendant who used a racist slur in his username."

In addition to the conspiracy charges, Tarrio is facing a civil suit accusing him of fomenting violence in the attack on the U.S. Capitol — a case in which he plans to represent himself.

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Parler, one of many right-wing Twitter clones including Gab, GETTR, and former President Donald Trump's own Truth Social, was already useful in helping geolocate the movement of many of the rioters as they traveled from Trump's "Stop the Steal" rally on the National Mall to the Capitol Complex. Pro-Trump rapper Kanye "Ye" West, known recently for his outspoken anti-Semitic rants, agreed to buy Parler earlier this month, but the deal is already riddled with problems.