Gonzalez assisted tax protesters in New Hampshire this summer

Christopher Maher, Alice Echo-News Journal

Cirino "Reno" Gonzalez, an Alice man who assisted tax protesters in New Hampshire in a standoff with U.S. Marshals earlier this year, was arrested on Wright Street Wednesday.

The arrest came shortly before noon when federal agents from multiple-law enforcement agencies, assisted by the Alice Police Department and the Jim Wells County Sheriff's Department, executed a no-knock warrant on a trailer home in the 1000 block of Wright Street.

Carlos Trevizo, a supervisor with the U.S. Marshals in Corpus Christi, said the home was occupied by Gonzalez, his brother Romeo Gonzalez and a woman identified as Donna Van Meter.

In addition to local law enforcement, agents with the U.S. Marshals Service, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the U.S. Secret Service were involved in the raid in Alice Wednesday, Trevizo said.

Reno Gonzalez, who reportedly had to be subdued after he resisted arrest, was charged in connection with federal indictments issued in New Hampshire recently, Trevizo said. Those indictments include charges of aiding and abetting a fugitive, threatening federal agents and illegal possession of firearms.

Trevizo said 12 firearms, including a .50 caliber rifle and several assault rifles, were removed from the home, along with two bullet proof vests.

Romeo Gonzalez, who is an officer with the Premont Police Department, and Van Meter were questioned and released without being charged, Trevizo said.

In a connected incident, officers pulled over a vehicle owned by the Gonzalez family near Robstown Wednesday morning, believing the vehicle was driven by Reno Gonzalez, Trevizo said. The driver of the vehicle was identified as Jose Gonzalez, Reno's father. Jose Gonzalez was questioned at the scene and was released without being charged.

In July, Jose Gonzalez and Romeo Gonzalez joined Reno in New Hampshire at the home of Ed and Elaine Brown, tax protesters who are wanted by the U.S. Marshals.

The Browns, who in April were sentenced to more than five years in prison after they were convicted of multiple charges related to tax evasion, have refused to surrender to federal marshals and are currently living in their home with several supporters.

They have repeatedly threatened to kill anyone who attempts to arrest them.

Reno Gonzalez joined the Browns in the standoff in May, and Jose Gonzalez, who has expressed his support for the tax protest, drove from Alice to New Hampshire with Romeo Gonzalez.

All three left the home a short time later, after a disagreement with Ed Brown.

Reno Gonzalez was expected to stand before a federal judge in Corpus Christi this morning in a hearing to determine bond and extradition proceedings.

Three other men were also arrested Wednesday for aiding the Browns.

The Concord Monitor reported Thursday that Daniel Riley, 40, of Albany, N.Y.; Jason Gerhard, 22 of Brookhaven, N.Y.; and Robert Wolffe, 50, of Randolph, Vt. were all arrested Wednesday on charges related to providing assistance to the Browns.

The U.S. Marshals Service was expected to hold a press conference Thursday afternoon to provide additional details related to the arrests.