The police on Saturday arrested 31 men affiliated with a white supremacist group, who were planning to riot near a pride event in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. The police found the masked men standing inside a U-haul truck.

“It is clear to us, based on the gear the individuals had with them … along with paperwork that we seized from them, that they came to riot downtown,” Coeur d’Alene Police Chief Lee White said at a press conference Saturday. 

The police said they were alerted about the suspicious U-Haul by an informant, who said that “it looked like a little army was loading up into the vehicle”.

The police pulled over the vehicle and detained the men. In videos posted to social media, the men wearing khakis, navy blue shirts, beige hats, and facial coverings, were seen kneeling on the grass with their hands zip-tied behind their backs. 

White Nationalist hate Group Was Planning To Disrupt Pride Event

According to the police the group was planning to do something to disrupt a pride event in a nearby park and riot in other downtown areas. The police said they had found riot gear, a smoke grenade inside the vehicle and the men wore Patriot Front patches and logos. One man was earring a shirt that said “Reclaim America” on the back. 

Southern Poverty Law Center said that Patriot Front was “a white nationalist hate group that formed in the aftermath of the deadly “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, on August 12, 2017.

“PF’s activism typically consists of anonymously posting flyers, dropping banners off buildings or overpasses or performing miscellaneous acts of public service such as park cleanups. When PF orchestrates protests or public appearances, they are typically tightly choreographed and scripted to maximize propaganda value. Virtually all its activities are undertaken with propaganda value in mind,” the Law Center added. 

The police said that all the 31 men were charged with conspiracy to riot.

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