How to Help Those Affected by SoCal Brush Fires

Anti-Illegal Immigration YouTuber Turns $280 Fine Over Video Camera Into a Federal Criminal Trial

It began as a $280 citation for using a video camera in a courthouse.

Gary Gileno is shown outside the federal courthouse on April 6, 2018 before his trial. Gileno was fighting a $280 citation for failing to comply with orders while trying to bring a video camera into a L.A. County Sheriff oversight meeting in 2017. (Credit: Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times)

Gary Gileno is shown outside the federal courthouse on April 6, 2018 before his trial. Gileno was fighting a $280 citation for failing to comply with orders while trying to bring a video camera into a L.A. County Sheriff oversight meeting in 2017. (Credit: Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times)

But to Gary Gileno, at stake was much more than the couple hundred bucks he was told to pay.

An attorney for the anti-illegal immigration activist and prolific YouTuber told a judge Friday that the four-hour trial over the fine was really about preventing government abuse of power, protecting the rights of journalists and ensuring that citizens can hold public officials accountable.

“If he is convicted … it’ll chill speech, it’ll chill journalism, it’ll say the federal government has a superpower to do whatever it wants,” attorney William Becker said. “This is unprecedented. This is what we expect to see in a police state.”

Read the full story on LATimes.com