Militia leader's speeches drew FBI attention before arrest

LAWYER: Schaeffer Cox's attorney asks court for more details.

August 9, 2011 

FAIRBANKS -- Court documents indicate that it was Schaeffer Cox's speeches in the Lower 48 that got the FBI's attention and led to an investigation of the man charged with conspiracy to commit murder.

Cox's attorney, Nelson Traverso, wants to know more. He wants the court to reveal exactly which speeches the FBI is referring to in the court document, according to Tuesday's Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.

In his brief, Traverso quotes FBI Special Agent Richard Sutherland telling Cox upon his arrest in March that the FBI had already been watching him.

Specifically, Sutherland tells Cox that people who saw his speeches in the Lower 48 and believed he supported "violence or overthrow against the government" and submitted recordings of the speeches to the FBI.

The FBI ended up sending at least two confidential informants to investigate Cox and his Alaska Peacemaker's Militia.

The investigation concluded Cox and four of his associates had illegal weapons and were planning to kill law enforcement and court officials.

In the process, investigators accumulated more than 100 hours of secret recording and thousands of pages of written materials that have been turned over to defense attorneys, but none so far explain exactly which Cox speech triggered the investigation, Traverso said.

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