TO THE ARREST WARRANT
TO THE SOURCE
Roanoke neo-Nazi jailed on federal charges
By Laurence Hammack
The Roanoke Times
William A. White
Photo courtesy of the Roanoke City JailA white supremacist known for his inflammatory Internet postings about race-related issues - and his verbal attacks on the people involved in them - has been arrested on federal charges.
William A. White, commander of the Roanoke-based American National Socialist Workers Party, was being held without bond this morning in the Roanoke City Jail, according to Lt. Mark Sweentenberg of the Roanoke Sheriff's Office.
Asked what White is charged with, jail officials referred questions to federal authorities. "That's all we know, that he's a federal inmate," Sweetenberg said.
Kevin Foust, a senior FBI agent who supervises the bureau's Roanoke office, referred questions to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago.
Officials there were not immediately available for comment.
However, a copy of what appears to be a search warrant recently used to seize White's computer equipment, which White posted to a Yahoo message group earlier this week, indicates a Chicago link to a federal investigation into his activities.
The warrant authorized FBI agents to search a Patterson Avenue building that houses the computer equipment White uses to maintain his Web site, overthrow.com. According to the warrant, authorities were looking for computer files and other records "that may contain all evidence of the crime of threatening Hale Juror A."
White's Web site closed by FBI (Oct. 17, 2008)
Roanoke neo-Nazi cleared of threat allegation (July 29, 2008)
In an interview earlier this week, White said that's a reference to a juror in the case of Matthew Hale, who was convicted by a Chicago jury in 2004 of soliciting the murder of a U.S. District Court judge.
White said he recently included information about the juror, including a home address, in an overthrow.com posting that raised concerns about the case. But White said he made no threats against the juror.
The Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama organization that monitors hate groups, agreed on its Web site that White did not directly propose violence against the juror.
"But he told his readers that the man 'played a leading role in inciting both the conviction and the harsh sentence that followed," a blog item on the law center's Web site states. "He also described the conviction as wrongful and said the prison term handed Hale was a 'criminally long sentence.' "
Mark Potok, director of the law center's Intelligence Project, said Thursday that while White has often come close to the line between free speech and criminal activity, he may have finally crossed it by posting personal information about a juror.
Federal authorities are particularly sensitive about protecting jurors in cases such as Hale's, Potok said.
Since the FBI seizure of White's computer equipment last Saturday, overthrow.com has been down.
But White apparently was not charged until recently. In a posting to a Yahoo message group for white supremacists, made either late Thursday night or sometime during the day Friday, someone identifying himself as White said the FBI had just executed a second search warrant, this one on his home.
"They left remarking on how they did not have anything with which to chargesme [sic] and they needed to plan theyre [sic] next step," the post stated.
With White now in jail, the next step will be an arraignment before a magistrate judge, which could happen as early as Sunday afternoon.