Luis M. Alvarez/AP Photos
- Crypto advocate Samuel Armes had an eventful interview with the January 6 committee in July 2022.
- While being asked about a key riot planning document, he ended up on the floor with a leg cramp.
- Before speaking about his ties to the document, he bragged about how much weight he had squatted.
A Florida cryptocurrency advocate struggled to maintain his composure during questioning over a planning document prosecutors have alleged was tied to the Proud Boys and their efforts in the January 6. insurrection.
Samuel Armes, the founder of the Florida Blockchain Business Association, told the January 6 committee in a July 2022 interview that his name is not attached to a document titled “1776 returns,” which was in the possession of Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio ahead of the insurrection. Prosecutors have alleged in the Proud Boys’ upcoming trial on seditious conspiracy charges that the document was circulated by the group in December 2021.
The members of the group have pleaded not guilty and have denied the charges.
In the middle of being grilled about who authored the document, Armes ended up on the floor with a leg cramp and then bragged about how much weight he had just lifted.
“Sorry, I’m cramping,” Armes told Rep. Zoe Lofgren during the virtual interview, per the transcript released on December 23.
“He’s on the floor. Charley horse. Charley horse,” Anessa Santos, Armes’ lawyer, responds. “Just exhale.”
According to the transcript, Armes then took the opportunity to shift the conversation to his gym routine.
“I’m good. I just did leg day today, and I maxed out my PR squats,” Armes said. “By the way, that PR was 425 pounds.”
“That will now be in the congressional Record, so that’s good,” an unnamed January 6 investigator responds.
Throughout the course of the interview, Armes confirmed that he had met with Tarrio but denied authoring “1776 Returns,” a 9-page right-wing planning document tied to the January 6 riot, which included plans to occupy congressional offices, the Supreme Court, and CNN. The goal, according to the document, was to “fill the buildings with patriots and communicate our demands,” and to demand a re-do of the 2020 election with “Paper Ballots only.”
Armes said that an associate of his in the crypto world, Erika Flores, and Tarrio, who knew each other, were “trying to get me to help him figure out a way to make money off of selling T-shirts online.”
Flores did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.
“And they wanted me to, like, brainstorm with them on, like, T-shirt ideas and setting up some kind of warehouse in Miami to help underserved kids,” Armes said.
He added that he drafted his own 3- to 5-page document, which he had shared with Flores, claiming that he used his political science background to play out “war gaming” scenarios in case there was not a peaceful transition between administrations. He acknowledged in the interview with the committee that elements of his plan were used in the lengthier “1776 returns” document he was shown.
“I ended up sharing it with her on a Google Drive,” he told the committee, referring to Flores. “And after that, I thought nothing of it. I would’ve never imagined that it turned into the document that I was shown last week, would’ve had zero clue, zero idea. It’s horrific for me to even imagine that something that I would’ve written would’ve been used to source this kind of, like — I guess call it ‘terroristic document.'”
Armes’ attorney did not immediately respond to Insider’s requests for comment. An attorney for Tarrio did not return Insider’s request for comment.