SPOKANE -- An infamous protégé of Aryan Nations founder Richard Butler is expanding his Neo-Nazi empire in Bonner County.
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center's Intelligence Report, 33-year-old Shaun Winkler purchased 17 acres of land in the Hoodoo Mountains with plans to build a new Aryan Nations compound for himself and his followers.
Winkler studied under infamous Aryan Nation’s founder Richard Butler until Butler’s death in 2004.
The original compound in Kootenai County was torn down after the hate group went bankrupt about 11 years ago.
SPLC reports Winkler wants to reignite the group’s anti-Semitic rituals.
After spending years trying to repair North Idaho’s image, human rights activists like Tony Stewart are prepared to combat Winkler’s message of hate.
“We're not surprised, but we're also equally determined to answer hate with human rights and never remain silent in the face of that,” said Stewart of Kootenai County Task Force on Human Rights.
SPLC reports Winkler is behind in monthly payments and cut timber without permission, which may get him kicked off the property. Winkler may also be in trouble with the Panhandle Health District for sewage issues.
Winkler lost a bid for Bonner County Sheriff last spring.