#Sovereign Citizen #Illinois #IL arrested &charged|via ChicagoTribune,com
November 10, 2012 in Resistance
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Reputed member of anti-government group charged with filing bogus legal claims against court officialsBy Annie Sweeney, Chicago Tribune reporter
November 10, 2012
A reputed member of an extremist anti-government group was released to home detention Friday after her arrest on charges she filed bogus legal claims to retaliate against former U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, the chief federal judge in Chicago and several other court officers.
The liens sought $100 billion from each target, the indictment alleged.
Cherron Marie Phillips, who sources said is affiliated with the “sovereign citizen” movement, refused to have an attorney appointed on her behalf and stood in silence when the judge asked how she pleaded to the charges.
After several pauses, Phillips, 42, declared, “I accept for value and return for value for settlement and closure of this matter.”
U.S. District Judge Milton Shadur told her that “didn’t cut it” and that he didn’t understand what she was trying to say. “And I’m pretty good at this stuff,” the longtime judge said.
An assistant U.S. attorney from southern Illinois, assigned to the case because of potential conflicts of interest for Chicago prosecutors with Fitzgerald allegedly being targeted, had sought for Phillips to be taken into custody in part out of concern she would resort to similar conduct again if released.
Shadur told Phillips he was inclined to detain her since she was not accepting legal counsel and he was uncertain if she would follow court instructions, prompting Phillips to object.
Phillips, Assistant U.S. Attorney Nathan Stump and a federal defender who was assigned to the case conferred and reached an agreement for her release to home confinement on electronic monitors.
The judge also entered a plea of not guilty on Phillips’ behalf.
In the indictment filed Thursday, Phillips was accused of filing 12 liens in 2011 at the Cook County recorder of deeds’ office against Fitzgerald, Chief Judge James Holderman, as well as U.S. District Judge Joan Lefkow, who presided over her brother Devon’s 2006 drug case, and assistant U.S. attorneys in Chicago who prosecuted him.
Other targets of the liens included federal agents, the clerk of the court, members of law enforcement task forces and other federal prosecutors and judges, according to the indictment. Phillips allegedly listed her brother as the claimant on the liens.
Stump told Shadur that Phillips’ retaliation stemmed from her involvement in her brother’s drug case in Chicago’s federal court, saying she repeatedly filed motions on his behalf. She was barred from the Dirksen U.S. Courthouse in February 2011 after causing disturbances in courtrooms and making numerous frivolous filings on behalf of her brother.
The FBI considers the sovereign citizen movement an extremist anti-government group. Members argue they are not subject to local, state or federal laws. A signature maneuver of the organization is to flood courts with frivolous filings such as liens, experts have said.