Washington, DC (Agencies): Joe Biggs, a prominent leader of the far-right organization Proud Boys, has been sentenced to 17 years in prison for his role in the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol. This sentence is one of the longest handed down for a convicted rioter in connection with the infamous incident.

A Washington, DC jury found Joe Biggs guilty of multiple charges, including seditious conspiracy, for his active involvement in attempting to forcibly obstruct the peaceful transfer of power from then-President Donald Trump to Joe Biden following the 2020 election. Biggs led the Proud Boys’ march to the US Capitol during the fateful event.

Another member of the Proud Boys, Zachary Rehl, the president of the Philadelphia chapter of the organization and a former Marine, was also sentenced to 15 years in connection with the same incident.

District Judge Timothy Kelly, who delivered the sentence to Biggs, emphasized the significance of the rights protected by the Constitution and laws, for which people have sacrificed and fought. He lamented that the events of January 6, 2021, shattered the tradition of peaceful power transition in the United States.

“The nature of the constitutional moment we were in that day is something that is so sensitive that it deserves a significant sentence,” Judge Kelly remarked.

Prosecutors initially requested a 33-year sentence for Biggs, highlighting his involvement in political violence for years and the attempt to change the course of American history on January 6, 2021. However, Judge Kelly decided on a lesser sentence, acknowledging the violence during the Capitol attack while aiming to avoid creating significant disparities in sentencing.

This sentence ranks as the second-longest for a defendant linked to the Capitol attack. Stewart Rhodes, the founder and leader of the Oath Keepers, received the longest sentence of 18 years in prison in connection with the same incident.

As legal proceedings continue, the sentencing of key figures involved in the January 6 attack reflects the seriousness with which the law is addressing the breach of the US Capitol and the attempt to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power.

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