!!New Militia Sentencings--Alabama Ftee Militia!!

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Joseph Pothier

Sep 11, 2007, 10:25:21 PM9/11/07

Good Evening Newsgroup Readers,

I reference my numerous previous posts in threads !!New Militia Bust--
Alabama Free Militia!! and !!New Militia Guilty Pleas-- Alabama Free

I am delighted to report that according to the Associated Press
militiamen James Ray McElroy and Randall Garrett Cole of the Alabama
Free Militia [AKA Free Militia] were sentenced to over three years in
prison on weapons and explosive charges. Other members of the militia
who plead guilty will be sentenced later. The leader of the Alabama Free
Militia, William James Hudson, has been indicted and is awaiting trial.


Jay Reeves, `Judge Sentences 2 Ala. Militia Members to Prison In Weapons
Case,` Associated Press, 070911.

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP)— A judge sentenced two militia members to federal
prison for more than three years each Tuesday for helping make hand
grenades in an arsenal that supposedly was to be used if chaos descended
on their corner of rural northeast Alabama.

James Ray McElroy, 20, of Collinsville was sentenced to 41 months in
prison, and Randall Garrett Cole, 22, of Gadsden was ordered to spend 37
months in prison.

Both men admitted being part of a militia that authorities said feared
the government and disliked illegal immigrants. McElroy, Cole and three
other men who pleaded guilty to weapons charges previously said they
made and stored grenades out of fear of an economic collapse, terrorism
and martial law being imposed in the United States.

"I realize what I've done, and I'm sorry for it," McElroy told U.S.
District Judge U.W. Clemon.

Both McElroy and Cole pleaded guilty to conspiring to make hand grenades
and other weapons.

The other defendants who pleaded guilty will be sentenced later, and an
alleged leader of the group awaits trial.

Agents who conducted a series of raids in April seized items including
130 hand grenades, a grenade launcher, about 70 hand grenades rigged to
fire from a rifle, a machine gun, a sawed-off shotgun, 2,500 rounds of
ammunition and stolen fireworks that were used as a source of explosive

Authorities said the group called itself the Free Militia or the Alabama
Free Militia, but members said it was too disorganized to have a name.
Many of its activities centered around a ramshackle camper without
running water or electricity.

"We just called it the militia," said Raymond Dillard, who held the rank
of major and testified during the sentencing hearing for Cole.

Dillard, who is awaiting sentencing, said he recruited Cole to join the
group. He admitted once threatening to kill Cole, but only to prevent
another man — the government's main confidential informant in the case —
from killing Cole first.

Aggravated by teasing from Cole, the informant once pulled out a 9mm
handgun and put it to Cole's head, threatening to pull the trigger.

"All I did was said, `Naw, I'd shoot him if he needs to be shot,'" said

Dillard said members of the militia sometimes talked about being afraid
of what the government might do to them should fighting break out over
illegal immigrants or terrorists, but he didn't elaborate.

Cole testified he quit associating with militia members in April the day
after he welded caps on the open ends of 11 dummy hand grenades so they
would hold powder.

"It was getting too serious. Before that they were just talking about
things, and then they had me do something. I didn't want to be around
them," he said.

The judge ordered McElroy and Cole to undergo drug and alcohol counseling.

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