Self-Described Missouri ‘Sovereign Citizen’ And Associates Brought ‘Fake Criminal Charges’ Against Banker In Fictitious ‘International Environmental Court,’ Authorities Say
UPDATED 2:27 P.M. ET U.S.A. The prosecuting attorney for Greene County, Mo., has publicly thanked a People’s Bank manager for “not succumbing to [John F. Gibson’s] attempts to harass and bully his way out of responsibility for his criminal conduct.”
Gibson, 61, of Willard, Mo., entered a guilty plea Oct. 29 to a felony charge of forgery, the office of Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson said.
The case traces its roots to a circumstance that occurred in December 2010. That’s when Gibson, according to prosecutors, “created a money order on his personal computer falsely stating that it was to be paid by the United States Treasury. Gibson then presented the forged money order to People’s Bank to pay a debt his son owed.
“Gibson identifies himself as a ‘sovereign citizen’ and claimed that he had authority to create this money order as a United States citizen,” prosecutors said.
From a statement by prosecutors (italics added):
While Gibson’s attempt to pass a forged money order may not seem particularly newsworthy, it is important that the public be aware of the sovereign citizen movement and the danger posed by the movement. Sovereign citizens consist of many loosely associated groups that are located throughout the country. Their beliefs vary widely, but they all share the common belief that the government lacks legitimate authority. Many times individuals involved with sovereign citizens groups intentionally act in a manner to subvert government authority and try to harm those who they view as assisting the government by, among other things, filing false liens against them.
In this case, Gibson and his associates retaliated against the People’s Bank manager for her cooperation with the State by bringing fake criminal charges against her in a fictitious court. A sovereign citizens group in Taney County operating the
fictitious “International Environmental Court” charged the bank manager with violating environmental laws and issued a finding that the bank manager was guilty. Gibson filed a copy of the bogus documents with the Greene County Circuit Court Clerk’s Office on the day of his guilty plea. That matter is currently under investigation.