FBI agents arrested seven Ohio Amish men yesterday
in Pennsylvania. They are accused of participating in a series of "beard-cutting attacks."
Samuel Mullet, the leader of an offshoot group who reportedly ordered the bizarre attacks on other Amish men, was taken into custody along with his sons Johnny Mullet, Lester Mullet, and Daniel Mullet. Also arrested were Levi Miller, Eli Miller and Emanuel Schrock.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has more:
Armed with 8-inch scissors, the group would arrive at the homes of Amish families in rural Ohio after dark and attack the men inside, holding them down as they sheared their beards and left them emasculated and humiliated.
The Amish, whose beards carry religious significance, told federal authorities it was an assault worse than being beaten.
The attackers told their victims it was religious punishment.
On Wednesday, the U.S. Attorney's office labeled the attacks hate crimes and announced it would federally prosecute Sam Mullet, a former member of the mainstream Amish who formed a breakaway sect, and six others from his group.
: "Johnny Mullet signs documents during a preliminary hearing in October in the Holmes County Courthouse in Millersburg, Ohio. In the foreground is his attorney, Andy Hyde, and behind him, from left to right, are Lester Mullet, Daniel Mullet, Levi Miller and Eli Miller."
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