A former appointee of Donald Trump was sentenced Friday to 70 months in prison for his violent role on January 6, 2021.
Federico Klein, a former State Department appointee, was found guilty following a bench trial before Judge Trevor McFadden this summer of multiple counts, including assaulting multiple police officers that day.
“Your actions on January 6 were shocking and egregious,” McFadden, also a Trump appointee, said during Friday’s sentencing.
According to the judge, Klein assaulted an officer during an initial breach on the Capitol grounds, telling the officer “you can’t stop us.”
McFadden also detailed several other assaults on officers from Klein, many of which occurred in the lower west terrace tunnel, one of the most violent scenes that day.
“This is a government of law, not of men,” McFadden said, adding that Klein had “betrayed your office.”
During Friday’s sentencing, former US Capitol Police Sgt. Aquilino Gonell told the court that Klein had attacked him multiple times with a police riot shield.
Gonell questioned how “someone who took the same oath as I did” to protect the Constitution, could be involved in such an assault on the Capitol.
Prosecutors also noted Klein – an ex-US Marine – had access to sensitive information with a security clearance at the State Department and suggested that in attacking the Capitol to keep Trump as President, Klein could have also been trying to keep his job as a political appointee.
Investigators found several images of Klein in the riot allegedly using a police riot shield to wedge open an entrance for rioters and fighting against a police line for several minutes, according to his arrest affidavit. Klein wore a red “Make America Great Again” hat then changed into a “United States Marine Corps” hat during the riot, investigators say.
Stanley Woodward, Klein’s attorney, said in court that Klein had not planned to attack the Capitol that day, adding that “no one person caused January 6.”
Woodward, who also represents Trump’s co-defendant Walt Nauta in the classified documents case in Florida, noted Klein had worked on Trump’s 2016 campaign.
Klein’s actions on January 6, Woodward said, were “not a betrayal” of his service in the military and the State Department, but was part of attending “a protest turned wrong.”