Stewart Rhodes, leader and founder of far-right group the Oath Keepers, as well as 10 others were charged by federal authorities on Thursday with seditious conspiracy and other crimes in connection with the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, CNBC reports.
A new indictment handed down Wednesday but made public Thursday alleges Rhodes, 56, and others engaged in a conspiracy to "oppose the lawful transfer of presidential power by force, by preventing, hindering, or delaying by force execution of laws governing the transfer of power," per CNN. The indictment is partially based on communications sent on encrypted messaging app Signal, notes CNBC.
Of the 11 indicted, only Rhodes and one other defendant — Edward Vallego, of Phoenix, Arizona — were not previously charged in connection with the Capitol attack.
A charge of seditious conspiracy "carries a maximum possible sentence of 20 years in prison," notes CNBC. Rhodes has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, but has been under investigation regarding his role in the riot since at least last spring, notes The New York Times.
Though Rhodes was at the Capitol on Jan, 6 and communicating with team members, many of whom entered the building, there is no evidence he himself went inside, per the Times.
Rhodes' lawyer confirmed his arrest, according to CNN.