July 7, 2020

16° C, Clear

Full Forecast

Winnipeg Free Press



Manitoba neo-Nazi faces more charges in U.S.

The charges against Patrik Mathews continue to mount, as the disgraced Canadian reservist and neo-Nazi now faces up to 60 years in U.S. prison after two grand juries this week indicted him on five criminal counts.

Mathews faces four firearm-related charges, and an additional count of obstruction of justice for allegedly destroying his cellphone as the FBI raided his Delaware apartment Jan. 16.

Patrik Mathews faces up to 20 years in U.S. federal prison and 40 years in state prison. (Mikaela MacKenzie / Winnipeg Free Press files)

Patrik Mathews faces up to 20 years in U.S. federal prison and 40 years in state prison. (Mikaela MacKenzie / Winnipeg Free Press files)

If convicted on all counts, the Manitoba resident faces up to 20 years in U.S. federal prison and 40 years in state prison. There is no parole in the U.S. federal prison system.

The Maryland Department of Justice issued a news release Tuesday evening saying the government convened grand juries in Delaware and Maryland this week seeking indictments against Mathews, 27, and his co-accused: Brian Lemley Jr., 33, and William Bilbrough IV, 19.

The indictments against the three men were secured Monday and Tuesday.

The accused had been scheduled to appear Thursday in U.S. federal court in Greenbelt, Md., for a preliminary hearing. At the hearing — which would have been open to the public — a judge was set to rule whether there was enough evidence to move forward with a trial.

By contrast, grand juries are private and cannot be attended by media.

The co-accused were arrested as part of a nationwide crackdown on the Base, a violent neo-Nazi paramilitary group. Other members of the Base remain at large, and it’s possible the FBI continues to investigate.

Mathews is facing two felony charges for transporting a firearm and ammunition interstate with intent to commit a felony, and being an alien in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

He’s also charged with illegal possession of a firearm, illegal possession of an unregistered firearm, and obstruction of justice.

Lemley is facing a multitude of firearm- and alien-related charges. Bilbrough has been charged with helping harbour Mathews, who was in the U.S. illegally.

The Winnipeg Free Press exposed Mathews as a neo-Nazi recruiter and active combat engineer in the Canadian Armed Forces in August 2019, following a month-long undercover investigation.

Hours after being outed by the Free Press, the RCMP raided Mathews’ home in Beausejour and seized several firearms. After being briefly taken into custody, Mathews was released without charge.

Soon after, Mathews vanished, abandoning his truck near the U.S.-Canada border. He’s alleged to have linked-up with neo-Nazi comrades in the U.S. and begun planning murders and terror attacks while stockpiling guns and ammunition.

If convicted, the U.S. Department of Justice is seeking to take possession of items it says was used to commit the offences. The government has identified a 2019 Chevrolet pickup truck for seizure, as well as two firearms and a stockpile of ammunition.

If the property in question cannot be located due to the actions of the defendants, the government says it will take possession of different property valued at the same amount.


Twitter: @rk_thorpe

Ryan Thorpe

Ryan Thorpe

Ryan Thorpe likes the pace of daily news, the feeling of a broadsheet in his hands and the stress of never-ending deadlines hanging over his head.

Read full biography

Your support has enabled us to provide free access to stories about COVID-19 because we believe everyone deserves trusted and critical information during the pandemic.

Our readership has contributed additional funding to give Free Press online subscriptions to those that can’t afford one in these extraordinary times — giving new readers the opportunity to see beyond the headlines and connect with other stories about their community.

To those who have made donations, thank you.

To those able to give and share our journalism with others, please Pay it Forward.

The Free Press has shared COVID-19 stories free of charge because we believe everyone deserves access to trusted and critical information during the pandemic.

While we stand by this decision, it has undoubtedly affected our bottom line.

After nearly 150 years of reporting on our city, we don’t want to stop any time soon. With your support, we’ll be able to forge ahead with our journalistic mission.

If you believe in an independent, transparent, and democratic press, please consider subscribing today.

We understand that some readers cannot afford a subscription during these difficult times and invite them to apply for a free digital subscription through our Pay it Forward program.

The Free Press will close this commenting platform at noon on July 14.

We want to thank those who have shared their views over the years as part of this reader engagement initiative.

In the coming weeks, the Free Press will announce new opportunities for readers to share their thoughts and to engage with our staff and each other.

You can comment on most stories on The Winnipeg Free Press website. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

By submitting your comment, you agree to abide by our Community Standards and Moderation Policy. These guidelines were revised effective February 27, 2019. Have a question about our comment forum? Check our frequently asked questions.