U.S. District Judge Christopher Cooper on Thursday sentenced Dr. Simone Gold to 60 days in prison, plus 12 months of supervised release and a $9,500 fine, for her involvement in the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection. Photo by Gage Skidmore from Surprise, Ariz./Wikimedia Commons
June 17 (UPI) -- Dr. Simone Gold, one of the leading voices in the anti-vaccine movement, was sentenced to 60 days in prison after entering the U.S. Capitol during the Jan. 6, 2021, attack by supporters of former President Donald Trump.
Gold, the founder of America's Frontline Doctors, a group that has advanced conspiracy theories connected with the coronavirus vaccines and the pandemic, entered a misdemeanor guilty plea in March for unlawfully entering and remaining in a restricted area of the U.S. Capitol.
U.S. District Judge Christopher Cooper on Thursday sentenced her to the 60 days, plus 12 months of supervised release and a $9,500 fine.
A statement released Thursday on America's Frontline Doctors website claimed Gold's initial arrest and the government's investigation of the incident violated her rights.
"Dr. Gold remains committed to her activism for physicians' free speech," the statement said. "Our Constitutional rights have been chipped away. The First Amendment has been annihilated.
"Before 2020, we could have never imagined the government of our democracy stripping away our rights as it has. We have watched the Orwellian scene unfold before our eyes.
"A concerted effort has been undertaken to 'cancel' physicians who do not follow the mainstream narrative."
In the sentencing, though, Cooper slammed Gold and Frontline Doctors for their characterization of what happened Jan. 6.
"Your organization is leaving people with the misimpression that this is a political prosecution or that it's about free speech," Cooper said Thursday, according to CNN.
"It ain't about free speech. Jan. 6 was about a lot of things, but it wasn't about free speech or COVID vaccinations. ... The only reason you are here is where and when and how you chose to express your views."