Armed “Sovereign Citizens” Block MA Interstate [Video]

Boston’s CBS News affiliate reports:

A standoff between police and several armed individuals caused the closure of a part of Interstate 95 overnight. The situation also led to a shelter-in-place order for parts of the communities of Wakefield and Reading. The situation began when a trooper spotted two vehicles in the breakdown lane and stopped to offer assistance around 1:30 a.m. Saturday, according to Massachusetts State Police Col. Christopher Mason.

Mason said the trooper observed the group of 8 to 10 men trying to refuel a vehicle and saw they were wearing tactical-style gear. They were armed with a combination of rifles and pistols. The trooper asked the men for identification and called for backup. A group calling themselves “Moorish American Arms” posted a video on Instagram overnight showing armed members blocking the highway.

Boston’s NBC News affiliate reports:

State Police Col. Christopher Mason said the men have identified themselves as being part of a group known as Rise of the Moors. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s website, the Moorish sovereign citizen movement is a collection of independent organizations and lone individuals that emerged in the early 1990s as an offshoot of the antigovernment sovereign citizens movement, which believes that individual citizens hold sovereignty over, and are independent of, the authority of federal and state governments.

ABC News reports:

A bizarre incident is playing out Saturday morning in Wakefield, Massachusetts. According to local police: “during a motor vehicle stop, several heavily armed men claiming to be from a group that does not recognize our laws exited their vehicles and fled into the woodline” near Interstate Highway 95.

The incident unfolded around 1:30 a.m. when a state trooper came across a group of 8 to 10 people refueling on the side of the I-95 highway in Wakefield, a suburb of Boston. The group was dressed in military-style uniforms, carried tactical gear like body cameras and helmets and had long guns slung over their shoulders.