Enforcement Actions Filed Against Hate Group for NH Civil Rights Act Violations in Portsmouth

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Attorney General John Formella is pictured at Tuesday's news conference in Portsmouth. Mayor Deaglan McEachern and Stefany Shaheen, chair of the police commission, are behind him. Portsmouth Police Chief Mark Newport is also standing behind Formella. screenshot

Concord, NH – Attorney General John M. Formella and Portsmouth Police Chief Mark Newport announce the initiation of an enforcement action by the New Hampshire Department of Justice Civil Rights Unit against the National Social Club-131 (NSC-131), Christopher Hood, and Leo Anthony Cullinan for violating the New Hampshire Civil Rights Act and conspiring to violate the New Hampshire Civil Rights Act.

The civil complaints allege that on July 30, 2022, Mr. Hood led a group of NSC-131 members, including Mr. Cullinan, did trespass upon public property by hanging banners that read “Keep New England White” from an overpass overlooking United States Route 1 in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and that both Mr. Hood and Mr. Cullinan conspired to violate the Civil Rights Act by agreeing, in conjunction with other NSC-131 members, to travel to Portsmouth, New Hampshire and unlawfully trespass upon public property. The complaints allege that Mr. Hood, Mr. Cullinan, and NSC-131’s actions were motivated by race.

The civil complaint against NSC-131, an unincorporated association with members in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and other New England states, alleges that at least ten members of NSC-131 participated in the Civil Rights Act violation and therefore NSC-131, as an unincorporated association, can be liable for violating the Civil Rights Act.

Each violation of the Civil Rights Act allows for a maximum civil penalty of $5,000. Violations of the Civil Rights Act also empower the court to restrain the defendant from committing future violations of the Civil Rights Act and other hate-motivated conduct for three years.

The complaints and the allegations contained therein are merely accusations that the Civil Rights Unit must prove at a final hearing.

The Civil Rights Unit enforces state civil rights laws, including the Civil Rights Act and the New Hampshire Law Against Discrimination. Anyone who believes their civil rights have been violated may file a complaint at https://www.doj.nh.gov/civil-rights/index.htm or by calling 603-271-3650.

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