- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Federico Guillermo Klein, a former Trump administration official accused of violently assaulting police officers at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, was ordered to remain jailed pending trial Tuesday.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Zia Faruqui ruled during a virtual hearing that Mr. Klein should be kept in custody while awaiting trial for several charges he faces related to the mob rioting on Capitol Hill.

Mr. Klein was arrested Friday in Virginia after the FBI said he was identified by witnesses including a former colleague at the State Department who recognized him among the violent mobs.

Federal prosecutors alleged in court filings unsealed afterward that Mr. Klein, 42, used a riot shield to strike police officers defending the Capitol building from the mobs as Congress met inside.

Mr. Klein held a “Schedule C” politically appointed position at the State Department, as well a top-secret security clearance, at the time the Capitol was stormed by supporters of former President Trump.

He resigned several days later on the eve of President Biden succeeding Mr. Trump as a result of winning November’s election, for which Congress was meeting to make official when the Capitol was stormed.

“Despite his oath to support and defend the Constitution, Klein demonstrated his contempt for that oath, the legitimate functions of the government and for the Constitution itself when he assaulted officers in an attempt to stop the certification of a lawful election,” acting U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips argued in a court filing entered in support of keeping the defendant in custody.

The magistrate judge raised similar concerns during the virtual hearing, Reuters reported.

“How could someone sworn to protect the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic, then participate in an attempt to stop the administration of the Constitution?” he asked, Reuters reported.

Mr. Klein currently faces six counts, including obstructing an official proceeding, obstructing law enforcement and assaulting an officer with a dangerous weapon, among other charges.

Lawyers representing Mr. Klein told The Washington Times the defendant is “disappointed” with the results of Tuesday’s hearing, “especially the government’s insinuation that that the mere allegation of his participation in the events of January 6 renders him a danger to his community.”

Mr. Klein “appreciates the Court’s acknowledgement that he remains innocent until proven otherwise and looks forward to exhausting all of his rights under the law,” lawyers Stanley Woodward Jr. and Kristin L. McGough said in an emailed statement.

Hundreds of people have been charged in connection with the rioting at the Capitol on Jan. 6, although Mr. Klein is the first defendant identified as being a federal government employee at the time.

Prior to serving in the State Department’s office of Brazilian and Southern Cone Affairs, Mr. Klein worked on Mr. Trump’s successful 2016 presidential campaign.

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