Former State Department official Federico Guillermo Klein has been sentenced to 70 months in prison for his involvement in the January 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol. Klein, who worked during the Trump administration, was convicted on 12 counts, including assaulting police officers, after a bench trial before U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden.
During the sentencing, Judge McFadden described Klein’s actions as “shocking and egregious” and stated that he had “betrayed” his office. Klein was seen in videos from the riot beating and shoving police officers with a riot shield. He was also captured on photos wearing a red “Make America Great Again” hat, which he later replaced with a Marine Corps hat.
Former U.S. Capitol Police Sgt. Aquilino Gonell testified that Klein attacked him multiple times with the police shield during the riot. Gonell questioned how Klein, who had taken the same oath to protect the Constitution, could be involved in such an attack.
Klein’s attorney, Stanley Woodward, argued that his client’s actions were not a betrayal of his military or State Department service. Woodward described the events of January 6 as “a protest turned wrong” and asserted that no one person caused the attack.
Klein, a former Marine, held a Top Secret security clearance on the day of the riot. He was arrested in March 2021 after video footage and photos identified him among the mob of Trump supporters attempting to breach the Capitol doors.
More than 1,000 people have been charged in connection with the January 6 riot, including former President Donald Trump, who was indicted in August on federal conspiracy charges related to the insurrection. Klein is the first known member of the Trump administration to be criminally charged in connection with the riot.
Klein worked on Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and was hired at the State Department after Trump took office. He resigned from the department on January 19, 2021, one day before Joe Biden’s inauguration.