Two men who were arrested for allegedly taking an AR-15 and a samurai sword to a Philadelphia vote count centerin November now face having their $750,000 bail revoked for joining the MAGA mob riot at the US Capitol last week.
Joshua Macias, the 42-year-old founder of Vets for Trump, and Antonio Lamotta, a 61-year-old member of the group, are accused of taking part in the January 6 violent insurrection on the Capitol that left five dead – including a DC cop who was hit over the head with a fire extinguisher.
Prosecutors say video evidence shows the two men entered a cordoned off area in the Capitol and that Macias ‘gave a speech to a crowd inciting a riot’ telling supporters to ‘defend this constitution’ against ‘the enemy’.
Macias and Lamotta were first arrested back on November 5 outside the Philadelphia Convention Center where votes were being counted after they allegedly traveled from Virginia Beach in a QAnon-decorated vehicle carrying an AR-15 rifle, ammunition and a samurai sword.
The two men, who have pushed unfounded claims of election fraud online, have since then acted as bodyguards for far-right Virginia Senator Amanda Chase – who is facing calls to resign after she attended the pro-Trump rally last Wednesday that led to the siege.
Two men who were arrested for allegedly taking an AR-15 and a samurai sword to a Philadelphia vote count center in November now face having their $750,000 bail revoked for joining the MAGA mob riot at the US Capitol last week. Pictured Antonio Lamotta (left) andJoshua Macias (right)
They are accused of taking part in the January 6 violent insurrection on the Capitol that left five dead
Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner’s office filed a motion Tuesday to revoke Lamotta’s bail, citing evidence that the two men ‘participated in the insurrection at the US Capitol.’
‘The defendant and co-defendant are visible in media footage that shows them within the security perimeter on the Capitol Grounds in an area specifically marked ‘No Demonstration Permitted,’ the motion reads, according to the Daily Beast.
Prosecutors cite evidence that Lamotta waspresent at the Capitol along with Macias while the 42-year-old gave his speech ‘inciting a riot’.
‘During that speech, the rioters overran the Capitol Police Officers stationed at the door of the Capitol and invaded the building in a manner not seen since the War of 1812.’
Prosecutors had already filed a similar motion against Macias last week.
In his speech, Macias told the crowd ‘domestic enemies are here’ and called Vice President Mike Pence a traitor who ‘backstabbed these patriots’.
Macias on stage at DC on January 6.Macias ‘gave a speech to a crowd inciting a riot’ telling supporters to ‘defend this constitution’ against ‘the enemy’ last Wednesday, prosecutors say
Macias also branded Pence a ‘Benedict Arnold’ – the American military officer who betrayed the US during the Revolutionary War
‘Those domestic enemies are here The enemy is not at the gate, the enemy is already here.’
Macias branded Pence a ‘Benedict Arnold’ – the American military officer who betrayed the US during the Revolutionary War.
‘Mike Pence is a Benedict Arnold. We believed in you, Vice President. We had hope that you would do what’s right for our Constitution,’ the transcript reads.
‘I stood with you on stage, sir. We believed in you. You backstabbed the veterans, backstabbed these patriots. That’s why we’re here.’
During the Capitol siege, the pro-Trump mob chanted ‘Hang Mike Pence’ and ‘Where’s Mike Pence?’ as they stormed the building, while the vice president and his family were forced to go into hiding.
In his speech, Macias also called on Trump to invoke the Insurrection Act and, at one point, gave a shoutout to ‘Tony’ Lamotta, prosecutors say.
‘President Trump, you have the ability to pass, you have the strength sir. The Insurrection Act is now! You have the power sir, and we support you 110 percent,’ Macias said.
In CNNfootage from around 5 p.m. January 6, a man thought to be Lamotta is seen walking passed a reporter with members of the Oath Keepers.
A Facebook Live video posted by Chase the night before last week’s siege also shows the senator with Macias and leader of the Oath Keepers Stewart Rhodes as they encouraged people to attend the pro-Trump rally.
Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner’s office filed a motion Tuesday to revoke Lamotta’s (pictured) bail, citing evidence he ‘participated in the insurrection’
The Oath Keepers is one of the largest radical antigovernment groups in the US and is based on a set of baseless conspiracy theories that the federal government is working to destroy the liberties of Americans, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Rhodes previously said on right-wing show InfoWars in November that the militia group was ready to storm DC to defend Trump after he lost the election to Joe Biden.
In the motion to revoke Lamotta’s bail, prosecutors also present cartoon images from his Twitter account including an image of a pitchfork-carrying mob chasing and shooting at an attorney general the night before election day.
The motion also says the 61-year-old has a history of posting conspiracy theories and racist commentary online.
There is no evidence yet that Macias and Lamottta entered the Capitol last Wednesday – but prosecutors say footage shows them in a prohibited area around the building.
Macias told The Daily Beast he was not inside the Capitol, claiming footage shows him dancing to a pro-Trump rap act outside the building at the time.
A Facebook Live video posted by right-wing Senator Amanda Chase the night before last week’s siege shows the senator with Macias and the head of militia group the Oath Keepers encouraging people to attend the pro-Trump rally
It is not clear if the two men entered the Capitol but prosecutors say there is evidence they were in a cordoned off area
William J. Brennan, an attorney for Macias, told the Philadelphia Inquirer he will fight the motion arguing that he was not part of the’criminal lunatics’ that stormed the capitol, attacking law enforcement and looting and vandalizing the seat of government.
He also defended Macias’ speech insisting it was ‘not inciting anything’ and is simply ‘expressing an opinion’.
‘He references the vice president. I don’t share his opinion, but he has a right to that opinion.
‘It’s the bedrock of our freedoms as American citizens If you want to look at incendiary speech, look at the president,’ he said.
The two men are currently out on bail over November’s charges after they each posted10 percent of their $750,000 bail.
They were arrested on November 5 after the FBIreceived atip off about people heading from Virginia Beach to Philadelphia with weapons.
In November Macias and Lamotta were arrested for allegedly traveling to Philadelphia in a Hummer filled with ammunition
Lamotta is seen handcuffed on November 5 in Philadelphia near the convention center
The Hummer had a sticker supporting QAnon with the ‘when we go 1 we go all’ QAnon slogan
A QAnon hat was visible in the Hummer driven by the two men and one woman
Police said theywere told that a man and his mother and another person were traveling to the Philadelphia region to ‘straighten things out’ as votes continued to be counted.
QAnon is the debunked extreme right wing conspiracy theory that claims Satan-worshipping pedophiles are plotting against Trump and are running a global child sex trafficking ring.
They then found the two men – and a woman – both of whom were armed with handguns.
Macias had a Virginia concealed-carry permit, which is not recognized in Pennsylvania while Lamotta told officers he did not have a gun permit.
An inspection of the Hummer then uncovered an AR-style rifle, about 160 rounds of ammunition and a sword.
Lamotta and Macias were charged with Concealed Firearm Without a License, a third-degree felony, and Carrying a Firearm on Public Streets or Public Property, a first-degree misdemeanor.
They are scheduled to appear in court Thursday on these charges.