A leader of a breakaway Amish community in rural eastern Ohio was sentenced Friday to 15 years in prison for forcibly cutting the beards and hair of community members.
Samuel Mullet Sr., 67, and 15 followers were found guilty last year in connection with what authorities said were the religiously motivated attacks on several fellow Amish people. Mullet and others were convicted of conspiracy to violate a federal hate-crime law.
Prosecutors said the followers, at Mullet’s instruction, shaved the beards and cut the hair of Amish people who had left his group over various religious disagreements.
Five attacks happened in four eastern Ohio counties between September and November 2011.
Four of the followers were sentenced to seven years in prison, three were handed five-year sentences, two were sentenced to two years and six were sentenced to a year and a day, according to the Justice Department.
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