The leader of American neo-Nazis fled to Russia and from there coordinated the crimes in the USA
46-year-old American Rinaldo Nazzaro is a neo-Nazi with experience. For propaganda on the Internet, including in the Telegram messenger, he used the pseudonyms "Norman Speer" and "Roman Wolf." In 2018, Nazzaro created The Base, one of the most dangerous paramilitary organizations operating until recently in the United States. As I found out with the BBC, at about the same time, Nazzaro with his wife, a citizen of Russia, moved from New York to St. Petersburg.
The FBI is now closely involved in organizing The Base: seven of its alleged members have been arrested and charged with various crimes, including a conspiracy to kill.
The FBI describes The Base as a “racially motivated paramilitary extremist group” that “seeks to overthrow the US government, provoke a racial war and establish an ethnic state for the white race.”
The Base recruited participants over the Internet. Communication took place in secure messengers. Then they went to a kind of military training camp.
A video in The Base’s Telegram channel shows how a dozen professionally equipped men shoot cardboard targets in a forest with machine guns, arrange torchlight processions, and burn US flags. The venue of these events is not specified.
The real name of the leader of the organization for a long time remained unknown. However, on January 24, the Guardian announced that his name was Rinaldo Nazzaro. According to the results of its own investigation, the BBC came to the same conclusion.
In messengers, Nazzaro called himself "Norman Speer", but on the avatar used his real photo.
The same man - sometimes with a beard, sometimes without - is depicted in photographs published by the wife of Rinaldo Nazzaro and her relatives in Russian social networks. In one of the pictures, Nazzaro is captured with his Russian family, in the center of the table is a bottle of vodka and a herring under a fur coat.
Nazzaro's wife is a Russian woman. In 2008, she moved to New York and at one time, according to her resume, worked at JPMorgan Chase. In 2012, she married Nazzaro, now the couple has two children.
From time to time, a woman comes to the United States: she recently posted a photo on VKontakte with a view of the New York Gulf, accompanied by a commentary on “home comfort”.
According to this photo, the BBC managed to establish an apartment in the United States, where Nazzaro was registered and, perhaps, his mother and stepfather are now living. The Base Global company is registered at the same address, which in 2018 bought a plot of agricultural land in Washington state.
Prior to moving to Russia, Nazzaro led Omega Solutions International, according to the New York Commercial Register. On its website, the company offered the services of a "network of security professionals" with the skills of psychological operations, intelligence, counter-terrorism and rebel forces.
“Our employees worked with various government and military departments, including during military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan,” the site stated. The BBC failed to find out if Nazzaro really traveled to hot spots.
At the registration address of the company, the BBC found only a mailbox. But the registries indicate that the company still pays insurance premiums.
In St. Petersburg, Rinaldo Nazzaro gave private English lessons, posted ads on the Internet. The telephone number indicated in them belongs to his wife, but she did not answer the calls and SMS messages of the BBC.
In 2019, after moving, Nazzaro visited the annual exhibition "Integrated Security" in Moscow at VDNH. According to the site of the exhibition, it was organized by order of the Russian government and is focused on "demonstrating the results of state policy and achievements in ensuring the security of the country, its population and territory."
The guest list includes officials, diplomats, employees of Russian defense enterprises, research institutes, and private security companies.
In one of the public videos, the Nazzaro family travels in a compartment car to Cheboksary - to Rinaldo's mother-in-law. He is wearing a black T-shirt with the image of Vladimir Putin and the inscription in English: Russia, absolute power (“Russia, absolute power”) - the same ones are sold in Moscow underpasses.
In 2018, Nazzaro's wife bought an apartment in the elite residential complex “House at the Town Hall” in Degtyarny Lane of St. Petersburg - 200 meters from the building, where 13 city administration committees are located. Now apartments in it cost from 18 million rubles. From this apartment, Nazzaro could coordinate The Base.
In social networks, Norman Speer published materials from the British neo-Nazi organization National Action, which is banned in Britain itself. Now 11 members of the group have been convicted of extremism, four more are on trial.
Norman Speer also admired Al Qaeda, a terrorist organization banned in Russia and other countries whose name translates from Arabic as “Foundation,” that is, it is identical to The Base.
At the end of 2019, the FBI prevented the attempted murder of a married couple of anti-fascists and their children. Three people were detained - all of them turned out to be alleged members of The Base.
During interrogation in January of this year, they stated that the group leader taught them how to communicate in code words. And that, using this code, they informed the leader about the preparation of the crime. The murder of anti-fascists was planned for February.
The Base leader advised them not to take public responsibility for the crime, because "the signal will be extremely clear and will accelerate [the start of a racial war]."
After the recent arrest of members of The Base, Roman Wolf (aka Norman Speer, aka Rinaldo Nazzaro) said on the group’s Telegram channel: “We will continue our struggle for survival without embarrassment.”
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