Sovereign Citizen Group Forms Vigilante “Grand Juries” » ADL Blogs
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February 20, 2014 6

Sovereign Citizen Group Forms Vigilante “Grand Juries”

Mem­bers of a grow­ing anti-government extrem­ist group are form­ing their own “grand juries” around the United States.  Some bogus “juries” have already issued demands against local gov­ern­ment officials. sovereign-citizen-vigilante-grand-juries

The National Lib­erty Alliance (NLA) is a rel­a­tively new sov­er­eign cit­i­zen group formed in 2011 as the New York Lib­erty Alliance by sov­er­eign cit­i­zen guru John Darash of Pough­keep­sie.  In April 2013, Darash changed the group’s name and began efforts to spread nation­wide, recruit­ing sov­er­eign cit­i­zens to its ban­ner.   The sov­er­eign cit­i­zen move­ment is an extreme anti-government move­ment whose adher­ents believe that they can ignore vir­tu­ally all laws and reg­u­la­tions because the gov­ern­ment is the prod­uct of a malev­o­lent conspiracy.

Darash and his fol­low­ers have spent most of their time cre­at­ing so-called “Com­mon Law Grand Juries” (CLGJ) in coun­ties across the coun­try.  Accord­ing to the NLA, these bogus grand juries have the author­ity to con­duct inves­ti­ga­tions, issue indict­ments, and remove offi­cials from office.  

The sov­er­eign cit­i­zen move­ment has his­tor­i­cally cre­ated fic­ti­tious judi­cial or gov­ern­men­tal enti­ties, hav­ing formed var­i­ous “cit­i­zens’ grand juries” or “people’s grand juries” in the 1980s and 1990s, as well as hun­dreds of “com­mon law courts” in the 1990s.  The CLGJs are the lat­est vari­a­tions of this long-running theme.  The NLA claims to have formed more than 100 CLGJs in the past year, although many are still basi­cally notional.

Nev­er­the­less, those CLGJs that have formed have already begun harass­ing local gov­ern­ment offi­cials.  In Jan­u­ary 2014, CLGJs in Mar­ion and St. Johns coun­ties in Florida sent a “Writ of Man­damus” to county offi­cials demand­ing a bud­get of $1.5 mil­lion, office space and equip­ment, and a meet­ing room with a con­fer­ence table and com­fort­able chairs.  On Feb­ru­ary 4, the Mar­ion County CLGJ sent a “Notice of Demand” warn­ing county com­mis­sion­ers that the Jan­u­ary demands were not optional.

In New York, Darash’s CLGJs claim to have signed a “True Bill” charg­ing the chief court clerk in Greene County with numer­ous “crimes” related to her alleged fail­ure to file CLGJ paper­work.  They have also “fined” a Greene County judge the amount of 100 ounces of sil­ver, cit­ing 23 sep­a­rate “vio­la­tions” for fail­ing to pro­vide doc­u­ments to the CLGJ and for refus­ing to speak with a CLGJ “Board of Review.”  They have also pur­port­edly sent harass­ing doc­u­ments to a num­ber of judges.

How the CLGJ will enforce their alleged power remains murky.  Dur­ing an Inter­net radio inter­view, Darash said the NLA would con­tact county sher­iffs about mak­ing arrests; if a sher­iff refused to make an arrest, they would indict him and go to the under­sh­er­iff.  Darash con­cluded with a veiled threat: “Now there is another thing to do, if that doesn’t work.  I’m not ready to speak about that until we are ready to do it.  But it is an atomic bomb, it’s very strong.”

  • jerry

    so a gov­ern­ment decides in secret meet­ings to become a new world order, one world gov­ern­ment that does away with the Con­sti­tu­tion. Then any one who objects to this trea­son is anti gov­ern­ment? To stand for your God given rights makes these peo­ple anti-government? Maybe you should move to North Korea, they have what you are look­ing for. Of course you will need to over­throw that gov­ern­ment mto be the rul­ing elite.

    • Aron

      Where’s your proof, Jimmy? All I see is that your med­ica­tions aren’t working.

  • Rea­so­niam

    “Dur­ing an Inter­net radio inter­view, Darash said the NLA would con­tact county sher­iffs about mak­ing arrests;” Was it an inter­view with the ADL? And the link to that par­tic­u­lar one is?

  • Terry in Arizona

    This from the ADL? Wasn’t your orig­i­nal pur­pose a plan to com­bat pro­pa­ganda against against a spe­cific group. Wasn’t it to cor­rect lies, expose the truth? And here comes Dr. Pit­cav­age with what, five, six, seven of the CLASSIC forms of “defama­tion” pro­pa­ganda? Can you find the tech­niques of ASSERTION, CARD STACKING, GLITTERING GENERALITIES, NAME CALLING, SIMPLIFICATION, TRANSFER, even guilt by (non) asso­ci­a­tion. NLA = Sov­er­eign Cit­i­zens, where is THAT doc­u­mented? Because they both use words like Free­dom, Rights, Gov­ern­ment? A Writ of Man­damus is only for the gov­ern­ment to use but not the peo­ple? Do you even know what it means? They (Darash’s group) have begun “harass­ing pub­lic offi­cials?” WOW! THAT’s a one-way street. Peo­ple cer­tainly shouldn’t be allowed to expect gov­ern­ment offi­cials, espe­cially elected offi­cials to per­form the duty they took an oath to do… And then, of course, true to the pro­pa­ganda tech­niques, no proof, no sub­stan­ti­ated doc­u­ments (in con­text), no cor­rob­o­rat­ing tes­ti­mony, cherry-picked (and out of con­text) quo­ta­tions, belit­tling remarks. I am appalled, and you should be ashamed. Isn’t this the exact type of yel­low jour­nal­ism, fic­tion pur­veyed as fact, from a lazy, biased Direc­tor of Inves­tiga­tive Report­ing (WHAT?) to dis­credit and defame a group in the eyes of a less-informed pub­lic to cre­ate hate and dis­as­so­ci­a­tion? Evi­dently ADL has redi­rected its char­ter to one of pro­tect­ing the gov­ern­ment, no mat­ter what. The gov­ern­ment can do no wrong? We are so close to his­tory repeat­ing itself with a les­son we all sup­pos­edly learned, but some­how THEY(?) have found a way to make those who can pre­vent it fight each other rather than join forces and right the wrong.

    • Guesty McGuest-Guest

      I am inter­ested in pur­chas­ing one of your tin foil hats. Could you please fur­nish details of your provider of such fine equipment?

      • Terry in Arizona

        You, who has no name, my tin­foil hat was passed to me by the found­ing fathers from whom I learned the mean­ing of Free­dom. As Samuel Adams said, “If ye love wealth bet­ter than lib­erty, the tran­quil­ity of servi­tude
        bet­ter than the ani­mat­ing con­test of free­dom, go home from us in peace.
        We ask not your coun­sels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which
        feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may pos­ter­ity for­get
        that ye were our countrymen.