Anti-Government Fugitive Arrested in Dinner Key With Weapons Stash on His Boat
An Arizona prepper with an anti-government inclination told U.S. Marshals on Wednesday that he couldn't be taken in alive. He was wrong. Now Robert Van Gundy, 29, has waived his right to extradition and is sitting in the Turner Guilford Knight correctional facility until officials from Arizona can pick him up.
Van Gundy's plan was to flee from Coconut Grove to the Bahamas to escape trial on 17 counts of luring a minor for sexual exploitation and sexual conduct with a minor. When marshals raided the small boat he was living on in Dinner Key with his wife, Arielle, they found four assault rifles and thousands of rounds.
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The marshals caught the Van Gundys by surprise. The couple were learning how to sail a boat -- their intended vessel of escape -- when they were taken in. A cache of weapons was also found on the boat, including a gun found in Arielle Van Gundy's purse.
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The feds had reason to believe the Van Gundys belonged to an anti-government, anti-police group, Marshals spokesman Barry Gold tells the Herald, and proceeded with "extreme precaution."
Neither Van Gundy's online presence shows much in the way of extreme anti-government views. Both Robert and Arielle were certainly fervent supporters of Ron Paul. Rob Van Gundy, who only has 53 friends and hadn't posted publicly since June, dedicated most of his social media activity to libertarian causes, though not of an any more extreme variety than your average Paul supporter.
"The Founders or Socialism?" he wrote in 2010. "It is nearing the time. We will have to defend the constitution again."
Arielle, meanwhile, appears to have been listed on this baby registry site, suggesting she might be pregnant.
Still, Golden says the feds had intelligence that Van Gundy was armed and ready to resist any attempt at arrest.
"There was a concern for law enforcement since Mr. Van Gundy was believed to be in possession of a cache of weapons and ammunition," Golden told reporters. "Arizona police said they (the Van Gundy's) are anti-government anti-law enforcement people with a strong hatred for law enforcement."
In addition to the weapons, authorities found a stash of food and several dogs on the boat.
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