When Ben Byrne asked a group of about 200 law enforcement and highway officials how many of them had come in contact with sovereign citizens about 25 people raised their hands.
Byrne, a reserve officer with the Apex, North Carolina Police Department and a current anti-terrorism instructor, was the keynote speaker during the two-day Idaho Highway Safety Summit held at the Red Lion this week.
He said sovereign citizens are right-wing extremists that reject the U.S. government and the laws of individual states.
“Members pick and choose what laws apply to them,” Byrne said. “And they’ve decided that most laws — including license plates, driver’s licenses and proof of insurance — do not apply to them.”