Suspect in Ohio Amish attacks must pay for defense

CLEVELAND (AP) — A judge says the alleged ringleader in beard-cutting attacks on fellow Amish in Ohio cannot rely on taxpayers to pay his legal tab.

Judge Dan Polster in Cleveland ruled today that 66-year-old Samuel Mullet Sr. can afford to pay for his defense. Mullet has an 800-acre farm near Steubenville with oil and gas leases.

Mullet has been represented by a public defender and now must pay if he wants to keep him.

Mullet and 11 followers are charged in five beard- and hair-cutting attacks on other Amish last year. They have pleaded not guilty.

Other defendants received court-appointed attorneys.

A feud over church discipline allegedly led to attacks in which the beards and hair of men and hair of women were cut. That’s considered deeply offensive in Amish culture.

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