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Klan branch leads surge, report says

By JIM ROSS
Published February 8, 2007


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HOMOSASSA - The Anti-Defamation League says there is a Homosassa branch of the Ku Klux Klan and that it is helping lead a national klan resurgence.

"The Empire Knights of the KKK based in Homosassa have held a number of rallies around the country and has either maintained or established chapters in 20 states," the league's Florida regional director, Andrew Rosenkranz, said in prepared remarks issued Tuesday.

This came as news to the Citrus County Sheriff's Office. Its investigators monitor the KKK and similar groups, and they have seen no activity recently, spokeswoman Gail Tierney said.

In 1990, a handful of KKK marchers and skinheads gathered outside the Historic Courthouse. In 2002, some Beverly Hills residents received klan fliers; other fliers surfaced in the past six or seven months in Pine Ridge.

During an interview Wednesday, Rosenkranz said he didn't disagree with local law enforcement's observations. But with the Internet and other communication capabilities, he said, a klan chapter or gathering of klan members can help organize nationwide without making a scene locally.

The league monitors the activities of racist hate groups and reports its findings to law enforcement and policymakers.

Founded in 1913, the league says it is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.

In a special report issued this week, the league says the klan has experienced "a surprising and troubling resurgence" during the past year by exploiting issues such as immigration, gay marriage and urban crime.

TO LEARN MORE

Klan resurgence

To see the Anti-Defamation League's report, go to www.adl.org and click on "Ku Klux Klan Rebounds."

[Last modified February 7, 2007, 23:39:37]


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