Friday, March 1, 2024

Fed Files VI: Nazi Provocateur Responds to Being Pegged as an FBI Informant

'I would be released from prison if I would agree, in addition to the cooperation demands previously made, to work with Chris targeting "Republican extremists." At the time, I didn't know what a "Republican extremist" was and thought the idea was pretty laughable...'

(Ken Silva, Headline USA) Neo-Nazi activist Christopher Cantwell, one of the most prominent figures from the 2017 Charlottesville “Unite the Right” rally, has a long history of talking to the FBI and other law enforcement agencies.

According to Cantwell—who cried on camera after Charlottesville—his informing only targets groups such as Antifa or bad actors within his own movement.

However, one of Cantwell’s friends has accused him of working for the FBI against right-wing political dissidents.

That friend, prison inmate Bill White—the main source of this ongoing Fed Files series—said in recent court filings that Cantwell approached him in prison in 2021 with an offer on behalf of the U.S. government: Get out of jail early in exchange for becoming an FBI informant-provocateur.

Cantwell is one of the many neo-Nazis that White has accused of being in bed with the feds. White has provided records to support many, but not all, of his accusations.

In Cantwell’s case, White has no records to support his claims. But along with the fact that Cantwell admitted to talking to the feds in the past, Headline USA is reporting on the allegations because the neo-Nazi took it upon himself to publicly disclose them.

Indeed, after this publication contacted Cantwell in November, he took to his radio show, Radical Agenda, to deny being an FBI informant. At the same time, Cantwell—an admitted abuser of methamphetamine, heroine and crack, according to court records—called White a “friend” and described him as a “genius.”

Instead of responding to White, Cantwell attacked this publication and spewed numerous lies, including that Headline USA is owned and controlled by Jews.

Additionally, he mischaracterized the Fed Files as an attempt to show that “racism is a government program”—nowhere in this series has that argument been made. He spent much of his broadcast knocking down that straw man.

Headline USA sent Cantwell’s reply to White, who eventually responded with more details about their dealings.

“You should ask yourself what my possible motive would be for fabricating these allegations, unless, of course, I’m just crazy and like to make up stories about people,” White said.

“As Chris said, he considers me a friend, and I personally like Chris, but he’s working for the FBI and I’m against that. So, that is what it is.”

Cantwell and the Feds

Allegations that Cantwell is an FBI informant first surfaced in the wake of the 2017 Charlottesville rally, when many of the players involved were fighting with each other about what went wrong at that deadly event.

Amidst that infighting, neo-Nazi Andrew “weev” Auernheimer released private messages between him and Cantwell, in which Cantwell admitted to talking to law enforcement.

“I talked to cops too. Gonna talk to the feds soon most likely,” Cantwell said at the time, leading Auernheimer to reply: “That’s f—ing shitty scumbag behavior.”

Cantwell insisted that he was only talking to law enforcement about Antifa.

“I’m going after Philly [Anti-Racist Action]. Not throwing our people under the bus. We weren’t the bad guys last August, and Charlottesville is ignoring that fact,” he said. “The feds want to bust Antifa, and I’m keen to help them.”

Auernheimer’s disclosures prompted Cantwell to publish a March 24, 2018, article titled, I Am a Federal Informant, where he attempted to explain himself.

Chris Cantwell wrote this blog post in an attempt to explain why he talked to the FBI. Chris claimed on his November joke that he wrote the headline because he thought it was "funny," but he has since removed the article.
Chris Cantwell wrote this blog post in an attempt to explain why he talked to the FBI. Chris claimed on his November joke that he wrote the headline because he thought it was “funny,” but he has since removed the article.

Two days later, he continued his attempt at damage control with another article titled, Why I’m Talking to the Feds.

“I am privy to information I cannot make public, which strongly suggests the FBI is going after Philly Antifa … If these scumbags get indicted, as they should, it basically torpedoes the case against me,” he said.

“Seeing as to how there is absolutely no chance I could snitch on our guys EVEN IF I WANTED TO, on account of our guys not having committed a crime, I don’t see how this could be a bad thing.”

Tensions between Cantwell and other neo-Nazis ratcheted from there.

Fed-on-Fed Violence?

In 2019, Cantwell became subject to prank calls from members of an online group called the “Bowl Patrol,” named in honor of Charleston mass shooter Dylann Roof’s bowl haircut.

After two Bowl Patrol members posted pornography and other obscene content to Cantwell’s website in February 2019, he responded by filing complaints with local police and FBI, according to court records.

Cantwell then began threatening one of the Bowl Patrol members, Benjamin Lambert, who was posting under the pseudonym “Cheddar Mane.” Cantwell knew Lambert’s personal information, and threatened to make it public if he didn’t stop prank-calling and harassing him.

According to court records, Lambert stopped harassing Cantwell, but Cantwell continued threatening Lambert—pressing him for the identity of Bowl Patrol leader “Vic Mackey.”

“If you don’t want me to come and fuck your wife in front of your kids, then you should make yourself scarce,” Cantwell told Lambert, later adding, “Give me Vic, it’s your only out.”

After that exchange, Cantwell posted photos of Lambert, his wife and his children on Telegram, according to court records.

Cantwell also called the Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline of the Missouri Department of Social Services to make a report against Lambert—claiming that Lambert was putting his children in danger because he used drugs and was involved in a right-wing extremist group.

Cantwell would reportedly meet with the FBI at least one more time in September 2019 to provide information about the Bowl Patrol.

But instead of using Cantwell’s information against the Bowl Patrol, the FBI built a case against Cantwell. He was charged in January 2020 with making extortionate communications and sending interstate threats.

Cantwell complained to Headline USA that the a Bowl Patrol member “was given license by the FBI to commit all the crimes he cared to as long as I was the victim.”

In any event, Cantwell was found guilty in September 2020 and sent to United States Penitentiary, Marion. There, he recruited White to work with the FBI, according to White.

Cantwell and White

While Cantwell was incarcerated in 2021, White helped him with legal filings related to the civil lawsuit he was facing from Charlottesville 2017.

After helping him with some of his filings, White said Cantwell made him an offer.

“On December 29, 2021, Cantwell approached me in the USP Marion [Communications Management Unit] Special Housing Unit (SHU) and told me that he was working for the FBI and that an attorney wanted to meet with me to ‘negotiate’ my release. I understood that attorney to be Timothy Heaphy, whom Cantwell previously discussed with me,” White said in a June 2023 court filing.

“Cantwell said that the FBI wanted him and I to start a ‘Republican extremist group’ to target ‘white supremacist scumbags like Richard Spencer and Jeff Schoep.’ The FBI, in turn, would make me a ‘leader’ of the Republican Party, release me from prison in early 2022, and eventually pardon me,” White said.

“As part of this deal, I would have to stop criticizing Judaism, and Cantwell urged me to convert to Catholicism. I refused the deal.”

A court filing in which prison inmate Bill White accused Chris Cantwell of being an FBI informant.
A court filing in which prison inmate Bill White accused Chris Cantwell of being an FBI informant.

Headline USA sent White’s claims to Cantwell in November, asking for his response. Rather than responding directly to White, Cantwell attacked this publication.

“Your blog is a sad joke. A stupid effort by Jews to pretend racism is some kind of government scam and keep Conservative Inc. in thrall to the likes of Ben Shapiro and Bibi Netanyahu,” he said.

“But you’re going to fail and your paymasters will find safe haven nowhere in this Earth. If history makes any note of your ridiculous charade, it will be as a demonstration of how your kind had sunk before you were forced into hiding.”

Heaphy, who wrote a report on law enforcement’s failures at Charlottesville and later served an investigator on the January 6 Commission, also denied White’s claims.

“I have had no interaction with Christopher Cantwell about this or any other matter since concluding my independent review of the Charlottesville events in 2017.  I am currently a lawyer in private practice and have no relationship with law enforcement or any government entity,” Heaphy said in an email.

“I have no authority and could not provide any benefit to a federal prisoner and have not attempted to do so in this or any other matter since I left the Department of Justice in 2014.”

Headline USA sent Cantwell’s statements to White, who responded weeks later with more details about his dealings with Cantwell.

According to White, he was in his cell, awaiting transfer after attacking inmate Annamalai Annamalai. Cantwell shouted to White from down the hall, he said.

“What he told me was that he had been recruited by a US Attorney to work targeting ‘violence,’ which is a real common rhetorical approach to inmates—‘Oh, yes, you committed some crimes, but, you’re not like those “violent” guys,’” White said.

“He told me that the US Attorney’s Office was ready to ‘negotiate’ with me for my release. Specifically, I would be released from prison if I would agree, in addition to the cooperation demands previously made, to work with Chris targeting ‘Republican extremists.’ At the time, I didn’t know what a ‘Republican extremist’ was and thought the idea was pretty laughable,” White continued.

“Chris said that he and I would create a radio show in conjunction with a ‘Republican extremist’ group … He would use the radio show to lure people in—much like [FBI informant] Hal Turner, in my understanding—and then we would work to set them up to stop their ‘violence.’”

Headline USA sent more questions to White, including about why Cantwell would admit to being an informant out loud, in front of other inmates. Referencing the Mike Judge comedy movie Office Space, White responded that the CMU where they were held wasn’t a “pound me in the ass prison”—meaning that Cantwell’s safety wouldn’t be jeopardized if people on his cell block knew he was an informant.

According to White, offers like the one purportedly made by Cantwell are a common occurrence in prison.

White claimed that the Bureau of Prisons’ “intelligence unit” runs operations akin to Israeli “bird cages,” where the Israelis put Palestinian inmates in special prisons where everyone else is cooperating with the government.

“About 40% of the inmates in CMU are what I call ‘pre-programmed informants,’ in that they received instructions from the FBI via the BOP’s ‘Intelligence Research Specialist’ to impersonate various types of ‘extremists,’” he said.

White is scheduled to remain in prison until 2037—though he said that under the First Step Act, he should be released to a halfway house in about five years.

Meanwhile, in November 2021 a jury found Cantwell liable for civil conspiracy in relation to Charlottesville, ordering him to pay $500,000 in punitive damages. Cantwell has an appeal pending in that case.

Before the publication of this article, Headline USA emailed Cantwell to give him the final word. The neo-Nazi replied with the following: “HeadlineUSA is fake news. I never purported to have the power to get Bill White or anyone else out of prison. I’ve never been an ‘informant’ for any law enforcement or intelligence agency.

“I have reported crimes to law enforcement like any reasonable person would, and the fact that law enforcement shows no interest in solving crimes where I’m the victim, should tell you something about the repute of the publication trying to stitch together fake narratives to the contrary.”

Ken Silva is a staff writer at Headline USA. Follow him at twitter.com/jd_cashless.

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