A Michigan firearms dealer indicted last week had sold about half dozen weapons to members of the extremist “Hutaree” militia group that was plotting to assassinate law enforcement agents, Newsweek reports. There is no evidence that defendant Walter Priest of Adrian, Mi., was in any way involved or even aware of the Hutaree’s bizarre plans — as alleged by federal prosecutors – to “wage war” against the U.S. government.
His case sheds new light on the Hutarees’ scary anti-government passions (shared by more than few militia groups) particularly their hatred of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF.) Priest, 52, came onto the ATF’s radar screen in 2008 when he attended a Michigan gun show and apparently sold a firearm with the serial number altered or obliterated. The customer then alerted local police who tipped off ATF. An ATF inspection of the store seems to have triggered a furious reaction from the Hutarees, some of whose members lived nearby.