On Wednesday, CNN reported that a defendant charged in the U.S. Capitol riots has flipped on the Proud Boys, and is providing information to federal prosecutors that could help them build a conspiracy case against the far-right group.
"The development is the first indication that people charged in the insurrection are cooperating against the pro-Trump extremist group," reported Katelyn Polants. "Federal prosecutors have made clear they are focused on building conspiracy cases against leadership of the Proud Boys and paramilitary groups like the Oath Keepers."
"What happens next is likely to follow the same pattern as in organized crime or drug investigations, with prosecutors pressuring knowledgeable defendants to become witnesses," continued the report. "Some may sign up to cooperate, and many of those charged are likely to plead guilty to avoid trial or more severe charges. So far, around two dozen people associated with the Proud Boys have been charged with federal crimes related to the riot."
The Proud Boys, who were plugged by former President Donald Trump in a 2020 debate, are infamous for their violent street brawls. They deny that they are a white nationalist group, but have made appearances at explicitly white supremacist rallies. Despite all this, one report suggested that the FBI recruited one of its high-ranking members to help investigate "antifa" groups.