BULLETIN: AdSurfDaily Figure Kenneth Wayne Leaming Was Founder Of ‘Sovereign Group’s Armed Enforcement Wing’ And Had ‘Assault Rifle’ With Bayonet At Time Of Arrest, Prosecutors Say; Probe Was Part Of Deeper Investigation Into ‘Sovereign Citizens’ Operating Nationally Through Washington State
BULLETIN: The November 2011 arrest by the FBI of Kenneth Wayne Leaming was part of a deeper probe into the activities of a “national” group of “sovereign citizens” operating in the Pacific Northwest, new court filings by federal prosecutors in the Western District of Washington reveal.
“Local jurisdictions alerted federal law enforcement that they had received a significant number of threats from members of this group,” prosecutors said.
Leaming, prosecutors said, was “a long-time constitutionalist/sovereign citizen, who had a
documented history of holding himself out as a law enforcement officer and/or a lawyer . . . He also was instrumental in founding the ‘County Rangers,’ the sovereign group’s armed enforcement wing. Members of the County Rangers were issued realistic-looking badges and credentials were required to possess firearms as part of their duties, and held themselves out as law enforcement agents.”
Leaming, 56, of Spanaway, Wash., is a figure in the AdSurfDaily Ponzi scheme story. Some ASD members have claimed Leaming was performing legal work for them, and his name appears on the ASD court docket as the filer of a purported “Notice of Final Determination and Judgment.”
Such filings have been associated with the “sovereign citizens” movement.
As first reported on the PP Blog last year, Leaming, 56 and a convicted felon for piloting an aircraft without a license, was found with two federal fugitives from Arkansas at the time of his arrest.
Both of those fugitives — Timothy Shawn Donavan and Sharon Jeannette Henningsen — now have been convicted of multiple counts of mail fraud in a home-based business caper in Arkansas, according to court files.
The new filings by prosecutors came in response to a bid by Leaming to challenge the search warrant in the case and to suppress evidence against him.
Leaming was indicted on charges of filing false liens, harboring fugitives, possessing firearms as a convicted felon and uttering a bogus “Bonded Promissory Note” with a face value of $1 million and depositing it in U.S. Bank.
The bank “briefly credited Leaming’s account in the amount of $31,350, before realizing the amount was wholly fictitious and reversing the credit,” prosecutors said.
At least four of Leaming’s “sovereign” associates — David Russell Myrland, Timothy Garrison, Raymond Leo Jarlik-Bell and David Carroll Stephenson — already have been charged or convicted in various schemes, prosecutors said.
Bogus liens linked to Leaming were found during a search of Jarlik-Bell’s residence, prosecutors said, making a veiled reference to the ASD case as a “a large wire fraud case” in the District of Columbia.
Whether Jarlik-Bell has any ASD ties is unclear.
The liens had been filed with the Pierce County Auditor [in Washington state] against a “federal District Judge, an AUSA, and other federal agents and employees, ” prosecutors said.
Other records show that each of the alleged lien targets had ties to the ASD case, including U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer of the District of Columbia. Collyer presided over the ASD case.
Prosecutors now assert that agents conducted a search of Leaming’s Spanaway residence and found an “AK-47 style assault rifle with a bayonet; several handguns (one of which was in a drawer of the desk Leaming was sitting at as entry was made); two other rifles; and a shotgun.”
From the prosecution filing (italics added):
“Immediately after execution of the search warrant, but before Leaming was transported from the scene, agents asked Leaming questions about the presence of firearms for officer safety purposes. Leaming admitted that a number of firearms were present in the home.”
Meanwhile, agents found a “box of ‘County Ranger’ badges and other false law enforcement credentials,” prosecutors said.
At the same time, agents found “numerous boxes of correspondence and legal paperwork documenting other apparent fraud schemes,” prosecutors said.
Leaming is contending that the alleged liens aren’t really liens and, even if they were, “he had some constitutional right to file them,” prosecutors said.
He also contends that he has a Constitutional right to possess firearms as a convicted felon and that the government is not permitted to regulate firearms ownership, prosecutors said.
As the investigation continued more bogus liens were discovered against other government officials, prosecutors said.
Those liens have been linked to Leaming and Stephenson, a jailed former business colleague of Leaming’s. They were filed in Pierce County “against the Warden” of the Federal Correctional Institution in Phoenix and the “direct[or] of the Bureau of Prisons,” prosecutors said.
From the prosecution’s filing (italics added):
” . . . during the investigation agents also discovered that Leaming was preparing and using false and fictitious financial instruments. These instruments were typically called “Bonded Promissory Notes,” and purported to be issued by the Federal Reserve or the United States Treasury.”
As to the firearms allegations, Leaming “advanced some type of nonsensical, quasi-legalistic explanation as to why they were not, in fact, firearms,” prosecutors said.
Leaming has been jailed since his November 2011 arrest. Since that time, he has sued President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder and a county sheriff in Arkansas, according to court filings.
ASD operator Andy Bowdoin was sentenced in August to 78 months in federal prison. He admitted in May that ASD was a Ponzi scheme. Prosecutors said the scheme gathered at least $119 million.