Hardy Carroll Lloyd, age 45, of Follansbee, West Virginia, pled guilty today to obstruction of the due administration of justice.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Lloyd admitted to making online threats to jurors and witnesses involved in the federal hate crimes trial in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, of Robert Bowers, the Tree of Life Synagogue mass shooter. Lloyd, a self-proclaimed “reverend” of a white supremacy movement, distributed threatening social media posts, website comments, and emails during the trial. As part of his plea agreement, Lloyd stipulated that he intentionally selected the jury and government witnesses in the Bowers trial as the targets of his offense due to the actual or perceived Jewish religion of the witnesses and the Bowers victims.
“Hardy Lloyd attempted to obstruct the federal hate crimes trial of the deadliest antisemitic attack in American history,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “His guilty plea underscores that anyone who attempts to obstruct a federal trial by threatening or intimidating jurors or witnesses will be met with the full force of the Justice Department.”
“Hardy Lloyd’s crime was motivated by hate and there is no place for that in our society,” said United States Attorney William Ihlenfeld. “He tried to undermine our system of justice by targeting the Jewish community and now will pay a steep price for his abhorrent conduct.”
“Mr. Lloyd thought he could get away with making threats against members of a jury to influence their decisions and now he’ll be accountable for his actions,” said FBI Pittsburgh Special Agent in Charge Mike Nordwall. “Mr. Lloyd’s words go far beyond speech that is protected by the constitution and cannot be tolerated. The FBI will vigorously pursue those like Mr. Lloyd who threaten and intimidate others based upon biases and personal differences.”
If the agreement is accepted by the court, Lloyd will be sentenced to 78 months in prison, which is expected to be the highest end of the sentencing range calculated under the U.S. Sentencing Guideline