The FBI said Thursday it had arrested a former State Department aide on charges related to the Jan.6 attack on the Capitol, including illegal entry, violent and disorderly conduct, obstruction of Congress and law enforcement, and assaulting an officer with a dangerous weapon. .
Former mid-level aide Federico G. Klein, who federal investigators said in court documents was seen in videos of riot-resistant officers assaulting them with a stolen riot shield, is the first member administration to face criminal charges in connection with the assault on Capitol Hill by a pro-Trump mob.
He worked on Donald J. Trump’s presidential campaign in 2016 and began working at the State Department just days after Mr. Trump’s inauguration in January 2017, according to a financial disclosure form he has filed as an employee of the executive branch.
Mr. Klein’s arrest was reported earlier by Politico.
The FBI said in a court document it received briefing on Mr Klein in January, the day after including his image in a poster asking for information on several people seen in the crowd that stormed the Capitol. . An informant provided investigators with Mr. Klein’s Facebook account, and another witness contacted them later to say he knew the man on the poster as “Freddie Klein,” according to the document.
Based on this , the FBI determined that when Mr. Klein allegedly attacked Congress on January 6 to help Mr. Trump illegally maintain power, he was still employed by the State Department and had a security clearance. Top Secret, the office said in the document.
Mr. Klein can be seen in video footage and other stills wearing a red “Make America Great Again” hat, pants and dress shirt as he attempts to cross an officer line metropolitan police in a tunnel near the west terrace, according to the document. “Klein quickly made his way to the left front side of the crowd and to the door of the Capitol building, where he engaged physically and verbally with the officers in line,” the FBI said.
He was part of a crowd that attempted to push through the doors despite warnings from an officer to back off, the FBI said, and used a “riot shield that had apparently been taken from an officer” to prevent the doors from closing.
Mr Klein has been seen in other videos “reminding the crowd behind him:” We need fresh people, we need fresh people “many times over,” the FBI said.
The Justice Department’s aggressive and sprawling investigation into the Capitol attack has led to criminal charges against more than 300 people, including dozens of far-right extremists who have been accused of conspiring to attack Congress to stop the final certification of Joseph R Victory from the Electoral College of Biden Jr ..
Many defendants have said they acted at the behest of Mr Trump, who falsely claimed he won the November election.
In recent weeks, the investigation has moved closer to Mr. Trump. Last month, investigators began examining communications from some right-wing extremists who had violated the Capitol to determine whether Roger J. Stone Jr., a close associate of the former president, had played a role in their plans to attack on Congress. Mr. Stone has denied any wrongdoing.