Trial Begins for Fairbanks '2-4-1' Militia Defendants
The state case fell apart last fall after a Superior Court judge ruled that secret recordings made without a search warrant were not admissible in court under the Alaska Constitution’s privacy protections.
Michael O. Anderson, who prosecutors had classified as a “computer guru” willing to look up the home addresses of targets, was released from jail because he faced no federal charges. Anderson was taken into federal custody again for a week in December, this time because federal prosecutors said he was not cooperating with a grand jury subpoena and needed to be compelled to testify.
Cox, Barney and Lonnie Vernon were indicted on their current federal charges in January. The indictment makes broader accusations than the state charging document. It mentions the “2-4-1” plan but also says the defendants targeted other government workers including the TSA and border patrol. The new indictment alleges the conspiracy can be traced back as far back August 2009.
The trial for Cox, Barney and Lonnie Vernon began Monday. Attorneys estimate it will last into mid-June.
Lonnie and Karen Vernon face separate charges that they threatened a federal judge and his family as well as an IRS employee over a tax dispute. That trial is scheduled for this fall.
Contact Fairbanks Daily News-Miner staff writer Sam Friedman at 907-459-7545.