Hale appears in court for sentencing
April 6, 2005 — White supremacist Matthew Hale returned to court Wednesday for sentencing. Last year, Hale was convicted of soliciting the murder of federal Judge Joan Lefkow. Prosecutors want Hale, who was also found guilty of obstruction of justice, to get the maximum prison sentence. The white supremacist argues his sentence should be no longer than eight years.
Hale, who is representing himself, told the judge “I cannot ask for mercy for a crime I committed when there was no crime.” Hale went to law school seven years ago. He graduated, but he was denied a law license in the state.
Wearing the orange jump suit of an inmate, Matthew Hale conducted himself as his own attorney Wednesday morning, citing case law and claiming his innocence while arguing for a light prison sentence. A judge convicted him one year ago of soliciting the murder of Judge Joan Lefkow. She had presided over a trademark infringement case involving Hale’s group, the World Church of the Creator, and an Oregon group with the same name. Hale’s followers promised revenge after the ruling didn’t go Hale’s way.
During the sentencing hearing, Hale told the courtroom that “I did not look at Judge Lefkow as being the enemy. I see myself as being on her side against this lie and perversion. She has been the victim as have I.”
Hale is referring to evidence against him involving a member of his former security force who acted as an FBI mole. A tape of the two was presented during the trial. On the tape, Hale is reminded that he asked for the judge’s home address.
“That information, yes, for educational purposes and for whatever reason you wish it to be,” the transcript quotes Hale as saying.
“Are we gonna exterminate the rat?” the informant asks.
“Well, whatever you want to do, basically,” Hale says.
A minute later he adds: “My position has always been that, you know, I’m going to fight within the law and, but, ah, that information’s been provided if you wish to, ah, do anything, yourself, you can. So that makes it clear.”
“Consider it done,” the informant says.
“Good,” Hale replies.
Hale faces a maximum of 40 years in prison.
A little more than a month ago, a gunman shot and killed Judge Lefkow’s husband and mother. Suspicion immediately centered on Hale. Two weeks after the murders, a man who also went before Judge Lefkow confessed to the killings in a suicide note.