Siaka Massaquoi attends the DailyWire+ Red Carpet Premiere of “Lady Ballers” in Nashville, Tenn., on Nov. 29, 2023. (Jason Davis/Getty Images for Bentkey Ventures)
Conservative actor Siaka Massaquoi was arrested by the FBI on Thursday and charged with misdemeanors in relation to his presence during the Jan. 6 Capitol breach incident.
On Nov. 30, the FBI arrested Mr. Massaquoi as soon as he arrived back home from a movie premier, according to a legal defense fundraiser set up in his name. At the time, he was with his pregnant wife Charlotte Massaquoi. The FBI separated them and took him to prison. Ms. Massaquoi “was told the charges had to do with January 6th; however, she was not presented with any arrest warrant. Siaka was taken to Monterey Park Jail where he stayed overnight and was told that he was being charged for four misdemeanors pertaining to his presence outside of the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. on January 6th.”
The FBI had raided his home almost three years back. “They have feared that this day might come, in which the government would charge him for something he didn’t do. He has been scrutinized at airports for several years but has never been formally charged for anything.”
The couple is expecting their first child in March. “This family has been through so many ups and downs, a circus would be a more appropriate term for the turmoil and unnecessary display of government overreach that they have had to endure.”
The fundraiser, which has a goal of raising $115,000 to cover the legal expenses to support Mr. Massaquoi, has raised $32,115 from almost 400 donors as of Dec. 12. Mr. Massaquoi has acted in hit TV shows like S.W.A.T, NCIS: Los Angeles, and Lethal Weapon.
According to podcast host Lori Mills, Mr. Massaquoi was arraigned on Friday and was released with conditions. “This judge was fair. Preliminary trial next week. We are praying it gets thrown out as D.C. wants the case,” she said in an X post, formerly known as Twitter.
Activist group StopHate posted video footage from the Jan. 6 incident in a Dec. 3 X post, showing Mr. Massaquoi inside the Capitol building. “He was at the threshold of the door for maybe a minute, & even helping the police direct the flow of foot traffic out the door. Crime?” the group wrote.
Mr. Massaquoi posted a link to this video post on his X account. “Witness why I was raided 2 years ago and recently arrested and charged Nov 30th 2023 almost 3 years later,” he wrote.
Criticism of the Arrest
Multiple celebrities and political commentators have spoken in support of Mr. Massaquoi. Actress Gina Carano called the arrest “political persecution.”
“@_SiakaMassaquoi is an incredible human being, what is happening to him is disturbing and WRONG. Enough already, we shouldn’t be having to try this hard to defend ourselves from our own government! It’s sickening,” she said in a Dec. 3 X post.
“Like they don’t have enough pedophiles, sex traffickers, rapists, and murderers to go after but what do they choose to spend their time doing? What are their priorities?? Harassing a peaceful protester on Jan 6th.”
Seth Dillon, the founder of Babylon Bee, also called the arrest a political persecution that “can’t be allowed to continue.”
“He isn’t just a talented actor and friend of the Babylon Bee; he also happens to be a Trump supporter. And he’s being punished for it by our government,” Mr. Dillon wrote in a Dec. 3 X post.
Commenting on the arrest, billionaire Elon Musk said “this has gone too far.”
Podcast host Kelly John Walker warned that the arrest is a sign of the United States nearing a “tipping point, beyond which we will be a completely subject people. The Rule of Law has been replaced by something no American must tolerate: Rule BY law.”
On the day of his arrest, Mr. Massaquoi and his wife attended the premiere of Daily Wire’s controversial movie “Lady Ballers” in Nashville, Tennessee. The comedy movie mocks the phenomenon of allowing men to compete in women’s sports.
Lawsuit Against FBI
The FBI’s arrest of Mr. Massaquoi comes a couple of months after he was part of a group of people who filed a lawsuit against the FBI, agency director Christopher Wray, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), and Attorney General Merrick Garland.
The lawsuit, filed in a district court in Florida on Sept. 20, requested the court to certify it as a class action lawsuit on behalf of individuals “who were peacefully protesting in Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021, but who did not commit any felonies or engage in any violence, but have been subjected to unconstitutional, illegal surveillance by Defendant Wray and his agents in the aftermath.”
Plaintiffs insisted that Mr. Wray and Mr. Garland have turned the FBI into their personal “Gestapo” or “Secret Police” to “target, arrest, and wrongfully prosecute” individuals who protested on Jan. 6.
“While there were a few people who chose to enter and engage in acts of violence in the U.S. Capitol, Plaintiffs were not among those involved in any such conduct,” the lawsuit said. “All Plaintiffs did was exercise their right to peacefully assemble and protest under the Constitution.”
Mr. Wray and Mr. Garland also engaged in “pressuring, and coercing family and friends of protestors to turn them in,” the complaint states, comparing the events to the Holocaust period when Germans were directed to turn over Jewish people to the Nazi government.
“On information and belief, Defendant Wray, at the direction of and in concert with Defendant Garland, their agents and assigns, are doing so at the direction of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris and his administration, in an effort to save their own employment as the Directors of the FBI and DOJ, as well as for other improper and nefarious reasons,” the lawsuit said.
According to an Oct. 3 update from the DOJ, over 1,069 individuals have been charged in relation to the Jan. 6 breach. They were charged in nearly all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The Epoch Times reached out to the FBI for comment.
From The Epoch Times