Feds Plan to Halt Accused Capitol Rioter's Farflung Travels | Miami New Times

Feds Want to Halt Jetsetting J6 Defendant Gabriel Garcia's Travels

To the surprise of federal prosecutors, January 6 defendant Gabriel Garcia popped up at the Conservative Political Action Conference, where he schmoozed with Matt Gaetz.
Gabriel Garcia attends the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Maryland in March 2023.
Gabriel Garcia attends the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Maryland in March 2023. Screenshots via CPTGABRIELGARCIA/Telegram

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After more than two years of journeying around the country while awaiting trial on charges tied to the U.S. Capitol riot, Gabriel Garcia's travels will be coming to an end if federal prosecutors have their way.

In a March 13 court filing, prosecutors say they plan to oppose all future travel requests from Garcia, a former Army captain and onetime Proud Boy from Miami who is facing a handful of felony and misdemeanor charges for allegedly storming the Capitol on January 6, 2021. The filing was in response to his latest trip to Washington, D.C., during which the feds claim he misled the court about what he'd be up to in the nation's capital.

While the court gave Garcia the green light to travel to D.C. in early March to observe his fellow January 6 defendants' trials and meet with his counsel, he made an allegedly unauthorized pit stop at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Maryland. He spent hours at the conference, schmoozing with the likes of U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz and Kimberly Guilfoyle and snapping photos that would later end up on his Telegram account.

"The government is surprised by defendant’s whereabouts on his recent trip," prosecutors wrote in the filing (attached at the bottom of this story).

"Because this defendant has continually taken advantage of the permissiveness of the court with deceptive travel requests, and takes to social media to mock the process, it is apparent that [he] does not appreciate the gravity of the situation he is in and he does not respect this court’s authority," prosecutors claim.

Despite a court directive requiring him to disclose his "precise itinerary," Garcia did not list CPAC as one of his destinations, according to prosecutors.

Garcia's attorney, Aubrey Webb, provided a statement to New Times on March 1, saying that Garcia is not charged with a violent crime and should have the freedom to travel.

"He's presumed innocent, and there is nothing inappropriate about him traveling. Pretrial conditions and bond are not meant to punish the criminally accused," Webb says.

"Every week we see J6 defendants get only a few months in prison for behavior no different — and at times much worse — than Mr. Garcia's allegations. The Government has singled him out because he was a Miami Proud Boy. This is selective prosecution. If he was a MAGA housewife from Texas, the Government would have charged him with only misdemeanors," adds Webb.

Garcia, one of the first South Floridians nabbed in connection with the riot, faces six charges, including two felonies, for allegedly storming the Capitol while imploring then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, "Come out and play." He encouraged other members of the crowd to storm the building and yelled out, "Fucking traitors," amid a confrontation with police, the FBI alleges.

He can't travel outside his South Florida locality without the court's permission under his pretrial release conditions.

In advance of his recent trip, Garcia told his probation officer he was traveling "up north to DC" in his RV and would be staying in the vehicle at a lodge in Alexandria, Virginia. He arrived in Alexandria at about 4:15 p.m. on March 2 before going straight to CPAC, where he remained most of the evening, prosecutors say. In one video Garcia posted on Instagram, he is shown chatting it up with Gaetz and immediately pointing out that he’s a "J6er.”

“Thank you for fighting for us,” Garcia, wearing a gray Aeropostale hoodie, tells a suited-up Gaetz in the video, before shaking his hand. “I really appreciate it."

The government's filing references New Times' recent chronicle of Garcia's travels, specifically his insinuations that he would be riding aboard Donald Trump's private jet (not an RV) to D.C. As noted in the filing, it's unclear whether Garcia actually rode the jet.

Garcia's attorney declined to confirm whether his client flew on the plane to D.C., citing "security concerns."

On March 3, Garcia attended a fellow January 6 defendants' trial with his attorney for "less than three hours" before traveling back to Maryland to attend CPAC, according to the federal filing. He shared a photo on Telegram of himself wearing a suit and riding in the back of a car on the way back to CPAC.

Prosecutors say Garcia spent "about 12.5 hours in National Harbor at CPAC DC 23, taking pictures and socializing with fellow January 6 defendants."

"The issue is not that defendant attended a political event," the filing states. "The real problem is that defendant has repeatedly demonstrated that his representations to the court should be doubted."

Garcia's trial is slated for August.
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