Belarus Grants Refugee Status to U.S. Capitol Riot Suspect Wanted by the FBI

Belarus has granted refugee status to a Capitol riot suspect who fled the United States, Belarusian state-owned television BelTA reported on March 22.

Evan Neumann from California received refugee status after he had been forced to flee the U.S. because of “politically motivated charges,” BelTA reported.

“Today I have mixed feelings. I am glad Belarus took care of me. I am upset to find myself in a situation where I have problems in my own country,” Neumann told BelTA.

A federal grand jury in Washington, D.C. indicted Neumann in December on 14 counts related to his participation in the Capitol riot, including civil disorder and assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Neumann is accused of punching two officers and using a metal barricade as a “battering ram” to strike officers during the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021.

Neumann sold his home in California in August 2021 and fled to Europe after the charges, saying that he was afraid of being tortured by the U.S. justice system.

Neumann resurfaced in Belarus in November.

Neumann initially settled in Ukraine but traveled to Belarus on foot after noticing that Ukrainian authorities were following him, he said in an interview in November.

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