Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press
Revealed Thursday, January 16, 2020 12:36PM EST
OTTAWA — A former Canadian navy reservist who was accused of being a neo-Nazi earlier than disappearing final summer season has been arrested by the FBI in the US.
Patrik Mathews was certainly one of three folks taken into custody this morning, in response to Dave Fitz of the FBI’s Baltimore workplace. Mathews and one different individual had been arrested within the U.S. state of Delaware whereas the third was taken into custody in Maryland, Fitz mentioned.
Mathews, a fight engineer with the 38 Canadian Brigade Group in Winnipeg, disappeared on the finish of August as he was being fast-tracked out of the navy for his alleged hyperlinks to a right-wing extremist group known as The Base.
His truck was discovered deserted on a rural property in Piney, in southern Manitoba close to the U.S. border, prompting hypothesis Mathews had entered the US.
On the time he disappeared, Mathews was being investigated by military-intelligence officers for his alleged function as a recruiter for The Base whereas the RCMP had been reportedly conducting their very own investigation.
RCMP beforehand seized quite a few weapons from a home in Beausejour, Man., about 60 kilometres east of Winnipeg, the place Mathews lived.
The Mounties nonetheless mentioned they had been treating his disappearance like another missing-persons case and that an arrest warrant had not been issued.
The accusations in opposition to Mathews and his subsequent disappearance put a highlight on considerations that neo-Nazis, white supremacists and right-wing extremists had been making an attempt to infiltrate the Canadian Armed Forces.
Whereas the navy maintains incidents of Forces members associating with right-wing extremism or white supremacy are remoted, considerations about their presence has been heightened in recent times because of the military-intelligence report and several other high-profile incidents.
The problem first got here to public gentle when a number of sailors related to the far-right Proud Boys group disrupted a Mi’kmaq ceremony in Halifax in 2017 whereas a military-intelligence report in 2018 mentioned 30 energetic service members belonged to a hate group or had made racist statements.
The Division of Nationwide Defence later revealed that greater than a dozen members of the Canadian Armed Forces recognized within the report had been warned, disciplined or ordered to take counselling, however allowed to stay in uniform.
Some extremist teams have additionally inspired their members to hunt navy coaching and recruit service members.