A Democratic congressman, in a lawsuit filed on Tuesday, accused former President Donald Trump, his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and two right-wing groups of conspiring to incite last month’s deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol.
The civil lawsuit accuses them of violating the Ku Klux Klan Act, an 1871 law passed to crack down on the white supremacist organization. It is the latest legal attempt to find Trump responsible for the violence on Jan. 6, after he spent months falsely claiming his election defeat in November was the result of widespread fraud.
It also names as defendants the Proud Boys, a far-right organization, and the anti-government militia known as the “Oath Keepers.”
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Representative Bennie Thompson, a Democrat who chairs the House of Representatives Homeland Security Committee, is the named plaintiff on the suit filed in U.S. District Court in Washington.
It seeks compensatory and punitive damages without citing a dollar figure, as well as an award for attorneys fees. In addition, it asks a federal judge to issue an order barring Trump and his co-defendants from future violations of the law.
Thompson says he heard threats and a gunshot during the attack on the Capitol and had to hide from the mob.
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and attorneys from the law firm Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC are handling the litigation.
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