KKK member arrested on gun charges BALTIMORE COUNTY

March 03, 1993|By Michael James | Michael James,Staff Writer

A man bearing the title of "Exalted Cyclops" in a Ku Klux Klan group has been charged with illegally selling rifles and machine guns at a Baltimore County flea market, federal firearms agents said.

Clyde Porter, 38, of the 500 block of Wampler Road, Middle River, was arrested Monday at his home after undercover officers with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms allegedly purchased three firearms from him at the North Point Indoor Flea Market.

Among the weapons purchased by the officers was an automatic Mac-10 pistol with a silencer, which was purchased for $1,200, bureau agents said. Automatic weapons are illegal in the United States.

When agents raided Mr. Porter's house and arrested him, they seized a cache of 13 weapons, including an AR-15 semiautomatic assault rifle and several other loaded rifles and handguns.

Also found in the house were several white robes, white supremacist literature, and Mr. Porter's personal business cards bearing his title as "Exalted Cyclops" of the "Invincible Empire of the KKK," a federal affidavit said.

It is believed that Mr. Porter, a convicted drug felon, belongs to a small KKK organization of about a dozen people who have ties to a larger KKK group in Western Maryland, an investigator said.

Agents said Mr. Porter had a table display at the flea market, in the 7700 block of Old Battle Grove Road, and had several rifles, knives and National Rifle Association memorabilia exhibited for sale.

In addition to what he had on display, authorities said that Mr. Porter also kept assault weapons -- automatic and semiautomatic -- and handguns underneath his exhibit and at his home. Those weapons were sold to customers who requested them, bureau agents said.

Although rifles can be sold with the proper firearms dealer license, Mr. Porter had no license and also would not have been able to obtain one because he is a convicted felon, bureau agents said. In 1988, he was convicted on a marijuana charge, agents said.

He was charged Monday with selling firearms without a license and being a felon in possession of firearms. Agents said they would seek a separate indictment on the charge of possessing a machine gun.

Dorothy Stevens, manager of the flea market, said that she was unaware Mr. Porter was selling firearms and that she was shocked by the news.

"Clyde? You've got to be kidding. I just bought a VCR from him," Ms. Stevens said. "I never saw any machine guns."

Ms. Stevens said Mr. Porter had been setting up a display at the flea market, which has more than 170 merchants each weekend, for about a year. She said he had the sales tax license required by the flea market, and he paid $5 on Saturdays and $10 on Sundays to have a display.

The items he tried to sell were "usually just junk, like trinkets and lipstick and things like that. No guns that I knew of," Ms. Stevens said.

Federal agents said no charges will be filed against the flea market.

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