Man Charged With Threatening to Kill U.S. Congressman Over Net Neutrality
A New York man was arrested and charged Wednesday after allegedly threatening to kill U.S. Rep. John Katko (R-NY) and his family, if the member of Congress voted to support the FCC’s efforts to repeal Net Neutrality. Syracuse resident Patrick Angelo allegedly left a voicemail for Katko, stating he would find the congressman, and his family and “kill you…all,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s office in the Western District of New York, reported The Hill.
Angelo was charged with interstate communication of a threat and threatening a federal official, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office. If convicted, he could face up to 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine or both.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has faced threats on the same issue to himself and his family; of the allegations, he said: “I condemn in the strongest possible terms any attempts to intimidate government officials with violent threats, and in particular, efforts to target their families.”
Pai intends to vote next week on repealing the 2015 changes that re-classified the internet as a utility. At issue is whether ISPs would block or slow down speeds for content provided by competitors. Pai says the changes would still prevent these actions while opponents dispute that.
Commissioner Mignon Clyburn released a list “debunking” the Chairman’s claims. Meanwhile, House telecom subcommittee ranking Democrat Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania, who condemned the FCC Net Neutrality proposal when Pai announced it, is asking his colleagues to join with him and oppose the proposed rule changes. He intends to send Pai a letter asking him to delay the vote, Politico reports.