New Development in Jan. 6 Obstruction Case

Photo by Colin Lloyd on Unsplash

( – On April 7, a federal appeals court ruled in favor of the Justice Department in a case impacting multiple charges that have been brought in the Capitol riot investigation, according to AP. The court’s decision means that it will be possible for more cases to be opened against the 300-plus defendants who have faced obstruction of Congress counts, in relation to the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol attack.

Ultimately, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit panel involved in the case came to the conclusion that lower court had been incorrect in choosing to dismiss any cases where the defendant’s conduct was not covered. Defendants will now be allowed to make full appeals to the court or to the U.S. Supreme Court to have their cases reviewed again.

Obstruction of an official proceeding is a charge that can carry up to 20 years imprisonment, according to AP. It is the most common felony charge against those captured in connection to the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol attack. This charge is being used to prosecute rioters who are accused of attempting to block the certification of President Biden following his victory in the 2020 presidential election.

U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols, however, had found the application of this offense to the rioters to be a stretch of the law. The Justice Department appealed his decision, claiming that his stance was too limited.

Judge Florence Pan, ruled in favor of the Justice Department in the appeal.

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