Courts & Crime

Scott Roeder discussed anti-government group involvement in 1996 video

The man convicted last month of killing Wichita abortion doctor George Tiller is now featured on a YouTube video discussing his involvement in an anti-government group in the 1990s.

Scott Roeder, of Kansas City, appears in a 10-minute segment posted by Dave Leach, an abortion opponent from Des Moines, Iowa. Leach said he interviewed Roeder in October 1996, when Leach was visiting Shelley Shannon in a Topeka prison. Shannon was convicted of attempted murder for shooting and wounding Tiller in 1993, and Roeder was living in Topeka. The interview aired on Leach's cable TV program, "The Uncle Ed. Show."

Leach provided the entire 47-minute interview to The Kansas City Star. In it, Roeder talks about his involvement in the "freemen" movement in the 1990s. "Freemen”"was a term describing people who claimed sovereignty from government jurisdiction and operated under their own legal system, which they called common-law courts.

Roeder said in the interview that Social Security, driver's licenses and marriage licenses were unconstitutional and described how some freemen had filed multimillion-dollar liens against judges and other government officials.

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