US prosecutors weighing sedition charges in riot

Federal prosecutors are looking at bringing “significant” cases involving possible sedition and conspiracy charges in last week’s riot at the U.S. Capitol. (Jan. 12)

Video Transcript

STEVEN D'ANTUONO: I want to stress that the FBI has a long memory and a broad reach. Agents and our partners are on the streets investigating leads not only here in the D.C. area, but also across the country, through the FBI's 56 field offices. So even-- like I've said before, so even if you've left D.C., agents from our local field offices will be knocking on your door if we find out that you were part of the criminal activity at the Capitol.

MICHAEL SHERWIN: We're looking at significant felony cases tied to sedition and conspiracy. Just yesterday, our office organized a strike force of very senior national security prosecutors and public corruption prosecutors. Their only marching orders from me are to build seditious and conspiracy charges related to the most heinous acts that occurred in the Capitol.

The enormity of this investigation is going to take a lot of work and a lot of effort, and this is not going to be solved overnight. It's not going to be solved within the coming weeks. It's not going to be solved within the coming months. This is going to be a long-term investigation, and rest assured the Bureau, the Department of Justice, all the US attorneys across the United States that are assisting in these investigations, everyone is in for the long haul.

When these actors left the Capitol-- these individuals these defendants-- obviously the impetus, the marching orders, by federal law enforcement was to find, fix, and charge these individuals as fast as possible. So the prosecutors from the D.C. US Attorney's office, we look for the most simple charge we could file as quick as possible. So therefore, the initial charges filed in many of these cases, a lot of them were misdemeanors.

After those charges are filed, then we have the ability to then indict these individuals on more significant charges, and that's exactly what has happened.