Three men convicted of civil rights violations 4-21-07

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Three men accused in two racially motivated attacks were convicted Friday of civil rights violations.

Shaun A. Walker, 39, of Hillsboro, W.Va., Travis D. Massey, 30, and Eric G. Egbert, 22, both of Salt Lake City, were indicted last summer on charges of conspiracy to interfere with civil rights and interference with a federally protected activity.

The jury in U.S. District Court received the case Friday afternoon and spent a few hours deliberating before finding the three men guilty on all counts, federal court spokeswoman Melodie Rydalch said.

Sentencing is scheduled for July 31 for the three former members of the white supremacist group National Alliance. Each count carries a sentence of up to 10 years in prison.

Walker is a former national chairman of the Hillsboro-based group. Prosecutors said the three men helped beat a bartender who was of Mexican descent at a downtown bar on New Year's Eve 2002. Massey and another man, who testified at the trial, were also accused of beating an American Indian man outside another bar in March 2003.

Prosecutors said the group instigated the attacks to frighten minorities.