AG Barr Confirms 500 Investigations Into BLM Rioters, Destruction of Statues
Attorney General says 35 joint terrorist task forces are investigating
The Justice Department has "scores of indictments" against rioters who have destroyed property and toppled historic statues during the Black Lives Matter protests, which have swept the US, Attorney General William Barr has confirmed.
Barr said his agency was using 35 joint terrorist task forces to investigate criminal activity since the protests spread nationwide.
Barr spoke during an episode of Texas Sen. Ted Cruz's podcast, Verdict, co-hosted by conservative commentator Michael Knowles:
"When the real violence started around May 25, 26, and so forth, we started using our joint terrorist task forces around the country," he said.
"And there are 35 of them around the country," Barr added.
"And now they are starting to go full bore, cranking out investigations, indictments against the people who are involved in this violence," Barr continued.
"So we've had scores of indictments already for such things as arson, destruction of federal property, things like that. And we have, right now, about 500 investigations underway," Barr said.
Barr added that organized groups of "provocateurs and agitators," which called on anarchist groups to carry out crime.
"They want to tear down the country. They are different than many traditional groups, and frequently, the signs of coordination and activity are very close to the event itself," the attorney general said.
"So like the morning of or the day before, and things are very fast-moving. But we definitely see signs out on the street of communication, of organization, of preplanning, prepositioning of things. So it's definitely organized activity.”
Last month, President Donald Trump also described the rioters as "organized groups" that have nothing to do with mourning the death of George Floyd.
Barr also speculated that many demonstrators are uneducated about the real history of the monuments that have been torn down.
"They're going after Saint Junipero Serra!" Knowles quipped earlier.
"And Cervantes!" Cruz added.
Other examples of rioters not being educated on the history of statues include:
The statue of Col. Hans Christian Heg, a Norwegian immigrant who died fighting against slavery, which was vandalized before being torn down by Black Lives Matter protesters in Madison, Wisconsin.
Then there was the historic Christopher Columbus statue, which was also torn down, despite it sculpted by an Italian immigrant and was presented as a gift for Minnesota’s Italian-Americans.
And the memorial in California dedicated to survivors of the Holocaust, which was toppled and smashed by vandals.
Meanwhile, President Donald Trump said he wouldn't tolerate the destruction of statues.
"I think many of the people that are knocking down these statues don't even have any idea what the statue is, what it means, who it is," Trump said.
"Now, they're looking at Jesus Christ. They're looking at George Washington. They're looking at Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson. Not gonna happen. Not gonna happen. Not as long as I'm here."