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Missouri 2022 Lesson Summaries

2022 Lesson 17: Sovereign Citizens



Release Date:

This is an online technical studies course. The lesson addresses the sovereign citizens movement and how it relates to law enforcement. Section one explains how the sovereign citizen movement began. It describes each of the four major groups that contributed to current sovereign citizen beliefs and tactics: the “Christian Identity” movement, the tax protest movement, the Posse Comitatus movement, and the militia movement.

Section two examines the common beliefs of sovereign citizens. It explains the actual legal and socio-economic underpinnings of three historical events that sovereign citizens identify in their belief system, and contrasts that with the incorrect interpretations of law and false history that sovereign citizens use to fuel their conspiracy theories. This Section also explains why sovereign citizens are so determined not to have government identification and other government documents. The Section describes the beliefs of Moorish sovereign citizens, especially as they relate to property rights.

Section three examines the “paper” crimes sovereign citizens commonly commit. This Section describes the theories behind their commission of tax and banking fraud, including the “straw man” or “corporate shell identity” theory. It describes how sovereign citizens clog the court system with lengthy, bizarre filings; they file fraudulent liens on the property of law enforcement officers, judges, and other public officials; they file fraudulent tax documents claiming these public officials have been paid dividends or interest which they have not been paid; they violate property laws by filing fraudulent deeds and tricking people into giving them money for properties they do not own; and they create fake identification documents.

Section four examines other types of crimes sovereign citizens commonly commit, including creating vigilante “common law courts” that threaten public officials, creating fake law enforcement agencies and issuing fake identification cards and badges, ambushing law enforcement officers, quickly becoming violent at traffic stops, and committing racketeering offenses.

Section five examines ways that law enforcement officers can quickly recognize that they are dealing with a sovereign citizen. This Section also advises officers on ways to more safely deal with sovereign citizens that they encounter while performing their duties.

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