Defense rests with witness confirming he was FBI informant and ran occupation’s shooting range
By Maxine Bernstein | The Oregonian/OregonLive
on October 17, 2016 at 6:45 PM, updated October 17, 2016 at 10:10 PM
Defense lawyers rested in the Oregon standoff case Monday after they called a witness who confirmed he was an informant for the FBI and acknowledged that he infiltrated the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge and supervised the shooting range for several days.
The man who occupiers initially knew only by his alias “John Killman” was revealed to be Fabio Minoggio, a Las Vegas resident subpoenaed by the defense to testify after prosecutors declined to confirm if he was a government informant. …
Minoggio was one of 15 confidential informants who fed the FBI information about the occupiers, testimony showed.
Nine of the 15 were at the refuge for various lengths of time between Jan. 4 and Jan. 26, according to a statement that Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig Gabriel read to jurors. Those nine included the three who have been identified at trial: Minoggio, defense witness Terri Linnell of California and Mark McConnell, who was the driver of the Jeep that Ammon Bundy was riding in when he was arrested on Jan. 26.
None of the unidentified other six informants were at the refuge beyond Jan. 23, Gabriel told jurors.
Killman, defense lawyer Tiffany Harris pointed out in a written legal brief, was a participant in the firearms and military-style maneuvers training during the occupation and helped train one of the defendants, Jeff Banta, in hand-to-hand combat techniques.
He spoke with a French or South African accent to people at the refuge and his Facebook profile included a majority of friends who occupied the refuge, according to defense lawyers. Defense investigators learned Minoggio was born in Switzerland and had served in the Swiss army for 20 years. He was trained in “psy-ops,” weaponry and martial arts, according to Harris’ legal brief.
“We are dealing here with a situation of a confidential informant who is participating in the commission of the alleged offense,” defense lawyer Marcus Mumford said in court.
Earlier Monday, prosecutors had refused to confirm if the man who went by “Mr. Killman” was working for the government.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Barrow said prosecutors aren’t obligated to disclose any information identifying informants. …
How do you tell government informants from agents provocateur?