When it comes to attorneys who are willing to go to bat for white supremacists in criminal proceedings and civil suits, the pickings are usually pretty slim. There’s the bumbling Elmer Woodard, a mutton-chop sporting defense lawyer from Virginia who bears a passing resemblance to Futurama‘s Hyper-Chicken. And Marc Randazza, the Vegas attorney representing Andrew Anglin who’s run afoul of ethics rules left and right.
And then there’s Augustus Sol Invictus, a white supremacist who briefly ran on the Libertarian ticket in Florida, and admitted to sacrificing a goat and drinking its blood as part of a pagan ritual. Invictus, born Austin Gillespie, was one of many scheduled speakers at 2017’s disastrous “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville. Invictus was so extreme he was expelled from the American Guard, a far-right “Constitutional Nationalist” organization headed by racist skinhead Brien James.
Although he briefly retired from the legal profession, Invictus resumed his practice in order to defend Neo-Nazis and alt-right activists accused of violent crimes. He recently made an appearance on Red Ice TV to discuss his role in representing Aaron Eason, one of several members of the Rise Above Movement (RAM), a Neo-Nazi street gang, who was indicted on charges of crossing state lines in order to incite or participate in a riot.
The criminal complaint against Eason and three other RAM members cited their violent attacks on protesters in Huntington Beach, Berkeley, and Charlottesville in 2017. All four are accused of violating 18 U.S. Code § 2101 and § 371. Each charge carries a maximum of five years in prison.
Red Ice host Henrik Palmgren claimed that people like Eason are being targeted by the federal government for opposing “open borders” and the “replacement and dispossession” of white people. Palmgren called the arrests of the members of RAM a “bizarre case, an outrageous case,” while Invictus falsely claimed that their violent acts were actually committed in self-defense. (He thankfully appears to have dropped his usual hokey accent for this interview.)
Invictus further whitewashed this white power fight club’s history, describing them as “kids in SoCal” who were “training,” “bettering themselves,” and “doing gymnastic things.” Invictus claimed RAM members went to rallies in order to “defend people like us.” He added that, “When violence breaks out, we thank God for the people like RAM who are there to save our asses.”
This is a fabrication. As documented by ProPublica, RAM members have wantonly attacked journalists and protesters who posed no threat to them or other white supremacists.
Nevertheless, Invictus is attempting to gin up support for his client, Aaron Eason, and the rest of the RAM members. And now he has a new organization with which to assist them: the American Legal Defense Fund (ALDF). Despite its innocuous sounding name, Invictus clearly plans on making the ALDF the legal arm of the white supremacist movement.
According to Invictus the ALDF was started to “help the RAM guys,” but will no doubt expand to assisting other white supremacists. The ALDF website states clearly that the group’s goal is “providing a voice for victims of political violence and legal persecution.” It further states that the ALDF “seek[s] to provide legal aid to those who have experienced terrorism at the hand of extremists” — no doubt referring to anti-fascists.
Hosts of various white supremacist online shows have raised hundreds of dollars for the ALDF in recent weeks. The hosts of Goy Talk Live — which recently featured Christopher Cantwell as a guest — reportedly raised $500 in early February. Another $500 was raised during a livestream of The Gas Station, a white power show that appears on YouTube’s Heelturn Network, according to Sarin, one of the show’s hosts.
The official ALDF Twitter account, meanwhile, is operated by I, Ancap, one of the hosts of Hora Vero — another Heelturn program. According to I, Ancap’s Twitter bio he is also a managing editor for Augustus Invictus. Another source of donations to the ALDF is Our Fight Clothing Co., a white supremacist online store that hawks t-shirts, stickers, and CDs by bands such as the Blue Eyed Devils.
The ALDF currently allows donations through PayPal, which explicitly prohibits “the promotion of hate, violence, racial or other forms of intolerance that is discriminatory.”