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An internet “conspiracy theory” came to life as many Los Angeles news outlets are reporting that a group of men claiming to be descendants of the Knights Templars were arrested on charges of impersonating police officers because they masqueraded as “Masonic Fraternal Police”, as described by LA County Sheriffs. The arrests were made on April 29 after significant investigation.

CBS Los Angeles
Three individuals claiming to be part of the “Masonic Fraternal Police Department” and descendants of the Knights Templar have been arrested on suspicion of impersonating peace officers.

Chiefs of a number of law enforcement agencies throughout Southern California were suspicious when they began receiving letters from the “MFPD,” advising that David Henry had been elected as the department’s chief.

Many of those letters were followed with calls from an individual, identifying himself as “Chief Deputy Director Brandon Kiel,” requesting meetings with the chief of each local agency.

One such meeting took place between members of the MFPD and Capt. Roosevelt Johnson of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station. The latter grew more suspicious when the group was unable to answer basic questions about the MFPD’s jurisdiction and the overall mission of their department.

The group maintained their claimed legitimacy, claiming that they were descendants of the Knights Templar and that their police agency had been in existence for 3,000 years. They then went on to claim that MFPD had sovereign jurisdiction in 33 states, as well as in Mexico.

After an investigation by detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, it was determined that the MFPD was not a legitimate police agency.

Detectives along with deputies from the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station and the Sheriff’s Special Enforcement Bureau served search and arrest warrants in the 28000 block of Linda Vista Street and the 17000 block of Sierra Highway on April 29 in Santa Clarita.

Three individuals were arrested, including David Henry, 46; Tonette Hayes, 56; and Brandon Kiel, 36.

Badges, identification cards, weapons, uniforms and police-type vehicles were all recovered during searches of both locations.
Henry, who is a resident of Santa Clarita, was arrested for Perjury Under Oath and Impersonating a Peace Officer. Hayes, also a Santa Clarita resident, was arrested for Impersonating a Peace Officer. Kiel, of Los Angeles, was arrested for Impersonating a Peace Officer and Misuse of a Government Identification.
“I always see them with their uniforms, so I thought they were part of any department, I didn’t know it was a fake one,” Henry’s neighbor Sherry Elgabalawy said.
Detectives suspect the three individuals were looking to deceive the community and trying to pass as law enforcement officials. Police also suspect other individuals may also be involved.
Authorities are asking that anyone with further information to contact the LA County Sheriff’s Department’s Emergency Operations Bureau – Sheriff’s Intelligence Unit, Detective Amalia Hernandez, at (323) 980-2211. Anonymous tips may be provided by calling “Crime Stoppers” at (800) 222-TIPS (8477), or over their website here.

CBS LA posted the mugshots of the 3 arrested.

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The most active of the arrested is seen here in his “uniform” (allegedly).

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How far did they go with the scam? CBS LA reports them hanging out with Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) and in one shot, standing behind the podium speaker during an LAPD conference.

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Though seemingly amateurish, the situation parallels the conspiracy facts confirmed in the United Kingdom in recent years.

Independent (UK)

Secret networks of Freemasons have been used by organised crime gangs to corrupt the criminal justice system, according to a bombshell Metropolitan Police report leaked to The Independent.

Operation Tiberius, written in 2002, found underworld syndicates used their contacts in the controversial brotherhood to “recruit corrupted officers” inside Scotland Yard, and concluded it was one of “the most difficult aspects of organised crime corruption to proof against”.

The report – marked “Secret” – found serving officers in East Ham east London who were members of the Freemasons attempted to find out which detectives were suspected of links to organised crime from other police sources who were also members of the society.

Famous for its secret handshakes, Freemasonry has long been suspected of having members who work in the criminal justice system – notably the judiciary and the police.

The political establishment and much of the media often dismiss such ideas as the work of conspiracy theorists. However, Operation Tiberius is the second secret police report revealed by The Independent in the last six months to highlight the possible issue.

Project Riverside, a 2008 report on the rogue private investigations industry by the Serious Organised Crime Agency, also claimed criminals attempt to corrupt police officers through Freemason members in a bid to further their interests.

Concerns over the influence of freemasons on the criminal justice system in 1998 led former Home Secretary Jack Straw to order that all police officers and judges should declare membership of the organisation.

However, ten of Britain’s 43 police forces refused to take part and the policy was dropped under threat of legal action. In England and Wales, the Grand Master of the Freemasons is Prince Edward, Duke of Kent. The United Grand Lodge of England declined to comment last night.

The Independent revealed last week that Operation Tiberius found that organised crime syndicates such as the Adams family and the gang led by David Hunt were able to infiltrate the Met “at will”.

Asked to comment on the Tiberius report, a spokesman for Scotland Yard said: “The Metropolitan Police Service will not tolerate any behaviour by our officers and staff which could damage the trust placed in police by the public.

“We are determined to pursue corruption in all its forms and with all possible vigour.”

Read more from UK’s Independent
Scotland Yard’s rotten core: Police failed to address Met’s ‘endemic corruption’
The corruption of Britain: UK’s key institutions infiltrated by criminals

More from UK’s Guardian.

Guardian
Senior South Yorkshire police officers who were freemasons orchestrated a “masonic conspiracy” to shift the blame after the Hillsborough disaster in 1989, the inquests into the deaths of the 96 victims have been told.

Maxwell Groome, a constable at the time, said that after the disaster at the FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at Sheffield Wednesday’s football ground, “the word” inside the force was that freemason officers held a meeting to blame superintendent Roger Marshall.

Groome said he heard that the meeting took place in portable cabins at South Yorkshire police’s area office, and was attended by Chief superintendent David Duckenfield, who had commanded the match.

Questioned by Michael Mansfield QC, representing 75 families whose relatives were killed at Hillsborough, Groome said he believed Duckenfield was “a grandmaster of a particularly influential lodge” – the Dore lodge in Sheffield.

Groome also told the inquest that senior officers pressured junior officers to change their statements after the disaster, because they were “terrified” of criticism of the force’s command. He said he was “duped” into agreeing to the changes, because he believed if he did not, he would never be called to give evidence to Lord Justice Taylor’s official inquiry or to the first inquest, and his statement would be “magicked away, dumped in a box, never to see the light of day again”.

Groome said a colleague, PC Brookes – whose first name was not given in court – called the inquiry team at West Midlands police to complain it was “a masonic conspiracy”.

Groome said Brookes told him West Midlands police asked if he could prove the conspiracy. Brookes told them he couldn’t, and Groome said they concluded it would not be investigated.

Asked why in earlier accounts about the events of the day he did not include the rumoured meeting of freemason officers, Groome replied: “Basically, I’d have been committing professional suicide.”

Marshall, who was in command outside the Leppings Lane turnstiles at Hillsborough, had requested a large exit gate to be opened, to alleviate a crush of Liverpool supporters outside the ground, and allow a large number in. The jury has heard that police did not close off a tunnel inside, which led to the Leppings Lane terrace’s crowded central “pens”, that many of the incoming fans headed down it, and the lethal crush happened in those pens.

Groome said he subsequently heard of the meeting between senior officers, said to have included Duckenfield, superintendents Roger Greenwood and Bernard Murray, Inspector Steven Sewell and Chief inspector David Beal.

“Being unable to prove it, I believe that most of them were masons,” he said.

The coroner, Lord Justice Goldring, sent out the jury of seven women and four men to allow legal discussions after Groome gave his evidence about the freemasons’ meeting. At the end of the day, the coroner referred the jury to “evidence of a meeting said by Mr Groome, on the basis of rumour, to have taken place on the morning of April 16”.

Goldring told them: “I should say this quite clearly to you: we have no other evidence than this rumour, said to emanate from the [South Yorkshire police] area office. It amounts to no more than what the witness described as ‘scuttlebutt’.’”

Groome, who on the day helped Liverpool supporters carry one of the 96 victims, Colin Wafer, 19, on an advertising hoarding being used as a makeshift stretcher, said the police operation as the disaster unfolded was “chaotic”. The inquest was shown Groome’s original statement – typed “recollections” made on plain paper after the event. He said officers were told not to write their accounts in their official police pocketbooks. Groome’s criticisms, which were removed in handwritten amendments after he submitted the statement, included a comment that “certain supervisory officers were conspicuous by their absence”.

Asked by Jonathan Hough, counsel for the coroner, to whom that comment was referring, Groome replied: “Duckenfield”.

Groome had also written: “The control room [where Duckenfield was in command] seemed to have been hit by some sort of paralysis.”

Other criticisms he made in his statement, which were also deleted, included the decision not to delay the match’s 3pm kick-off; reductions in police manpower; staffing of the control room; that “too many officers were sitting around in the gymnasium” and pointed to the removal from command at Hillsborough of the experienced officer, Chief superintendant Brian Mole. The jury has heard that Mole was replaced on 27 March 1989, 19 days before the semi-final which 54,000 people would attend, by Duckenfield, who had never commanded a match at Hillsborough before.

Groome subsequently signed a typed up version of his amended statement, he says, because he feared that it would not see the light of day otherwise.

The “main thrust” of the pressure to change his statement was, Groome said: “They were terrified of junior officers criticising senior officers and therefore, in their eyes, undermining the command structure of South Yorkshire police.”

The inquests continue.

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