Southern California-based white supremacist group leader, 2 members arrested in Los Angeles

ByRob Hayes and staff KABC logo
Thursday, October 25, 2018
SoCal-based white supremacist group leader arrested in LA
The leader and members of a white supremacist group based out of SoCal have been arrested in Los Angeles, federal officials said Wednesday.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The leader and members of a white supremacist group based out of Southern California have been arrested in Los Angeles, federal officials said Wednesday.

Robert Rundo was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport on Sunday, according to the FBI. Two others, Robert Boman and Tyler Laube, were also arrested in the South Bay area Wednesday morning. Authorities are searching for a fourth person, identified as Aaron Eason.

Rundo is the founder of the Rise Above Movement. A criminal complaint states Boman, Laube and Eason are members of the group. The complaint describes the Rise Above Movement as a white supremacy extremist group headquartered in Southern California.

MORE: CA white supremacists arrested in connection with Charlottesville

Rundo was arraigned Wednesday and was ordered detained pending trial. He was charged with conspiracy and rioting.

The criminal complaint states that the four and other RAM members traveled to political rallies, including in Huntington Beach on March 25, 2017, Berkeley on April 15, 2017, San Bernardino on June 10, 2017 and Charlottesville, Virginia, on Aug. 11-12, 2017. RAM members violently attacked and assaulted counter-protesters at each of these events, according to the complaint.

According to a press release from the Department of Justice, the affidavit alleges that the suspects used the internet to coordinate "combat training," attendance and travel before the events. They would also "celebrate their acts of violence in order to recruit members for future events."

The RAM group is known for its physical workouts and fight training held in local L.A.-area parks.

After authorities in Charlottesville forced the rally to disband on Aug. 12, a woman was killed when a car that prosecutors say was driven by a man fascinated by Adolf Hitler plowed into a crowd of peaceful counterprotesters.

Earlier this month, four RAM members -- three of them locals -- were indicted for conspiracy to riot as a result of their participation in the events at Huntington Beach, Berkeley and Charlottesville, the complaint stated.

As for Eason, FBI officials are asking the public for help in their search for him.

"Hoping he turns himself in. If not, we would ask anybody who has information as to his whereabouts to give us a call," said FBI spokesperson Laura Eimiller.

RAM members are accused of "using facilities of interstate commerce with the intent to organize, promote, encourage, participate in, or carry on riots," the complaint stated.

According to The Anti-Defamation League, Rise Above Movement members believe they are fighting against a "modern world" corrupted by the "destructive cultural influences" of liberals, Jews, Muslims and non-white immigrants. Members refer to themselves as the mixed martial arts club of the "alt-right" fringe movement, a loose mix of neo-Nazis, white nationalists and other far-right extremists.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.