FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A man that a worldwide anti-hate organization had been following and was arrested by the FBI in Fort Lauderdale last Tuesday appeared at the Broward County Courthouse Wednesday to face a judge.
Paul Nicholas Miller, 32, was taken into custody in the 1300 block of Southwest Sixth Street during a raid where firearms and ammunition were found in his apartment. Miller was arrested on a charge of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon.
The Anti-Defamation League had identified Miller as a “volatile white supremacist-accelerationist” and shared its findings with the FBI informing them that Miller was making videos, holding weapons, and calling for a race war on social media sites.
According to the arrest affidavit, a federal search warrant to be conducted at Miller’s address led to law enforcement finding firearm parts that could be assembled into an unregistered short-barreled rifle and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.
The indictment also said that a disassembled short-barreled rifle was found in a clothes dryer and that the gun did not have any manufacturer markings or serial numbers. Investigators said that a check of records did not show any firearms registered in Miller’s name.
Miller told investigators when he was arrested that he and his family had received threats from Antifa and Black Lives Matter groups and that he had tried to build a rifle by watching tutorials on YouTube. According to the indictment, he said that that he didn’t know he was doing anything illegal, and said, “I’m scared. I’m living alone. I don’t have anybody with me. Somebody’s going to, these people are trying to kill me.” Miller said he attempted to build a gun rather than purchase one because he believed America was on the brink of collapse and that firearms manufacturing would be “a good skill to learn.”
The indictment also said that Miller claimed the rifle did not work and repeatedly jammed, but then acknowledged that he had “fired the rifle one time at a range several months ago.”
Most of Miller’s threats that had him flagged by the anti-hate group were launched online, but prosecutors said that there is a video that shows Miller’s encounter with one man who he approached randomly at a strip mall. Prosecutors said the video showed Miller launching racial slurs at the man and recording the encounter in hopes of getting a reaction.
At times, Miller dressed as movie villains, waved guns and knives as he confronted individuals on video chats with racial, homophobic and anti-semitic statements.
Prosecutors said that given the totality of his words and weapons, Miller is a flight risk and “poses a serious risk to harass, injure and intimidate perspective witnesses.”
But Miller’s defense attorneys argued in court at Wednesday’s virtual hearing that the videos were entertainment and meant to shock and awe — that his costumes and his words were just a way to entertain his tens of thousands of fans on social media.
The judge, however, did not agree. His decision was that Miller was a danger to the community and ordered him to stay behind bars.
Currently, Miller is not charged with making threats, he is only facing weapons charges.