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FBI Raids on Christian and Judge Rules on 2nd Amendment

Posted 28 Mar 2010 at 20:24 PM by spanner

Official: Gun charges after FBI raids in Midwest

Like his hero Bill Clinton, Obama to attack Christians as the terrorists

March 28, 2010

By MIKE HOUSEHOLDER, Associated Press Writer Mike Householder, Associated Press Writer – 40 mins ago
ADRIAN, Mich. – The FBI said Sunday that agents conducted weekend raids in Michigan, Indiana and Ohio and arrested at least three people, and a militia leader in Michigan said the target of at least one of the raids was a Christian militia group. Federal warrants were sealed, but a federal law enforcement official speaking on condition of anonymity said some of those arrested face gun charges and officials are pursuing other suspects. FBI spokeswoman Sandra Berchtold said there had been activity in two southeast Michigan counties near the Ohio state line. She wouldn't say whether they were tied to the raids in the other states. FBI spokesman Scott Wilson in Cleveland said agents arrested two people Saturday after raids in two towns in Ohio. A third arrest was made in northeast Illinois on Sunday, a day after a raid took place just over the border in northwest Indiana. George Ponce, 18, who works at a pizzeria next door to a home raided in Hammond, Ind., said he and a few co-workers stepped outside for a break Saturday night and saw a swarm of law enforcement. "I heard a yell, 'Get back inside!' and saw a squad member pointing a rifle at us," Ponce said. "They told us the bomb squad was going in, sweeping the house looking for bombs." He said another agent was in the bushes near the house, and law enforcement vehicles were "all over." He estimated that agents took more than two dozen guns from the house. Michael Lackomar, a spokesman for the Southeast Michigan Volunteer Militia, said one of his team leaders got a frantic phone call Saturday evening from members of Hutaree, a Christian militia group, who said their property in southwest Michigan was being raided by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. "They said they were under attack by the ATF and wanted a place to hide," Lackomar said. "My team leader said, 'no thanks.' " The team leader was cooperating with the FBI on Sunday, Lackomar said. He said SMVM wasn't affiliated with Hutaree, which states on its Web site to be "prepared to defend all those who belong to Christ and save those who aren't." "We believe that one day, as prophecy says, there will be an Anti-Christ," the group's Web site said. "Jesus wanted us to be ready to defend ourselves using the sword and stay alive using equipment. An e-mail sent to the group by The Associated Press wasn't returned Sunday, and phone numbers for the group's leadership were not immediately available. Berchtold, the FBI spokeswoman in Michigan, said she couldn't confirm if the raids were connected to Hutaree. Lackomar said none of the raids focused on his group. Lackomar said about eight to 10 members of Hutaree trained with SMVM twice in the past three years. SMVM holds monthly training sessions focusing on survival training and shooting practice, Lackomar said. In Michigan, police swarmed a rural, wooded property around 7 p.m. Saturday outside Adrian, about 70 miles southwest of Detroit, said Evelyn Reitz, who lives about a half-mile away. She said several police cars, with lights flashing, were still there Sunday evening and 15 to 20 officers were stationed in the area. Neighbor Jane Cattell said she came home from the movies Saturday night and a helicopter was circling above, its spotlight illuminating her house. She and her sister, Sarah Holtz, wouldn't say who lived in the home but said they knew them from riding their horses past their house. "They're your average, nice neighbors," Holtz said. There were rumors about ties to a militia, but Holtz she knew nothing of that from her interaction with them. One of the raids in Ohio occurred at Bayshore Estates, a trailer park in Sandusky, a small city on Lake Erie between Toledo and Cleveland, park manager Terry Mills said. Authorities blocked off the street for about an hour Saturday night, he said. "Needless to say, this has everyone talking," said Mills, 62. "We have a lot of retirees here who don't want all this commotion." Mills said he didn't know the identity of the person arrested. FBI agents in Ohio also made an arrest in Huron on Saturday night, Wilson said. No further information would be released until after they appeared in court Monday, he said.

Federal judge OKs D.C.'s latest set of gun-control laws
March 28, 2010
Warren Richey Warren Richey – Fri Mar 26, 7:53 PM ET

A federal judge has upheld the new regime of gun laws passed in Washington, D.C., after the US Supreme Court invalidated the city’s handgun ban in a landmark Second Amendment ruling two years ago. The plaintiff in the new case was the same man, Dick Heller, who brought the initial challenge to the handgun ban and won the historic 2008 ruling. Mr. Heller did not fare as well in his latest round of legal challenges. US District Judge Ricardo Urbina ruled on Friday that the city’s new gun registration regime, including bans on assault weapons and large capacity ammunition feeding devices, do not violate rights guaranteed under the Second Amendment.
The decision is expected to be appealed.
The D.C. Gun case is being closely followed because it raises a critical question left unanswered in the high court’s 2008 ruling. The key issue is what standard of review should judges impose while assessing the constitutionality of gun regulations. Last month, the US Supreme Court heard oral argument in a second major gun rights case involving a handgun ban in Chicago. In that case, the question is whether the protections of the Second Amendment that apply in the District of Columbia are binding on state and local governments as well. A decision is expected before the end of June. But legal analysts are already scouting potential cases that might bring the next big issue “ the standard of review question “ to the high court. This second Heller case could be that case. In reaching his decision, Judge Urbina applied an intermediate level of judicial scrutiny. He decided against applying the toughest test, reserved for fundamental rights. He also rejected the city’s suggestion that he apply a highly permissive test. The judge upheld a registration regime that gun owners complained was excessive and unduly burdensome. It includes requirements for a background check, fingerprints, and photos; a ballistic identification procedure that will allow the police to trace a spent shell to that particular weapon; and a declaration to police of how the weapon will be used and where it will be kept. The judge said he was deferring to the judgment of the city council in passing the gun registration scheme. Because the council provided ample evidence of the ways in which the registration requirements will effectuate the goal of promoting public safety, and because public safety is a quintessential matter of public regulation, the court concludes that there is at least a substantial nexus between the registration requirements and the important governmental interest underlying those requirements. In upholding the ban on assault weapons, the judge cited the Supreme Court’s 2008 decision. He said the court found a constitutional right to possess only those weapons in “common use” that are typically possessed by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes. The city council concluded that assault weapons are military-style weapons of war, made for offensive military use. The council further found that such weapons are “disproportionately likely to be used by criminals” and do not have any legitimate use for self-defense. Urbina quoted the council as saying that such weapons would increase the danger to law-abiding users and innocent by-standers if kept in the home or used in self-defense situations. Heller and his co-plaintiffs countered that assault weapons are not designed for offensive military use, are not disproportionately used in crimes, and are commonly used for target shooting, hunting, and personal protection. They added that requiring a gun owner to have to reload after discharging 10 rounds is similar to requiring the kind of trigger lock the Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional in 2008. Urbina was not convinced. “This argument borders on the absurd,” he said in his opinion. Banning large capacity ammunition feeding devices does not render a firearm inoperable “any more than the burden of having to pull the trigger repeatedly to discharge each successive round of ammunition renders a semiautomatic firearm ‘inoperable’ in comparison to a fully automatic machine gun.”



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  1. Old Comment
    Phil Jayhan's Avatar
    My first guess upon reading this was that the group was infiltrated by FBI and set them up. One never knows, but I do know that nothing the Federal government does any longer can be trusted or taken at face value.

    Good article!

    Cheers-
    Phil
    Posted 29 Mar 2010 at 13:10 PM by Phil Jayhan Phil Jayhan is offline
 

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