An Ohio jury on Thursday found 16 members of a renegade Amish group guilty of hate crimes for a spate of beard-cutting and hair-cutting attacks that terrorized the Amish community in eastern Ohio in 2011. The group, led by Samuel Mullet Sr., had been accused of cutting the long beards of men and long hair of women — both considered central to Amish identity — to retaliate against Amish who had accused Mullet of leading a cult. Analysts say the prosecution took a considerable risk bringing hate crime charges against Mullet and his followers, but the jury was convinced that they had intended to suppress the victims' religious practice.
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