Monday Fresh: Randy Blythe Slams US Government

He wonders why they didn't warn him about being wanted for manslaughter in the Czech Republic, and says they did little to help him while behind bars.

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Randy Blythe has slammed the US government for failing to warn him that he was wanted for manslaughter in the Czech Republic.

His band Lamb Of God went to tour there in June without realising that Blythe would be arrested for allegedly pushing a fan into the crowd two years ago. Blythe disputes the allegation, but prosecutors say it resulted in the death of the fan two weeks later.

Blythe was finally freed last week after paying $400,000 bail, but now he's wondering why the US Government didn't warn him when they first heard about the allegations.

"The Czech authority sent a letter to the Justice Department, and our government told them basically where they can get off," he told Rolling Stone. "They said, 'No, we won't cooperate'."

"Regardless, what I'm a little bit steamed about is the fact that they didn't have the courtesy to contact me in any way, shape or form and say, 'Hey, you're wanted for manslaughter in a foreign country'."

The US Embassy didn't completely ignore Blythe while he was incarcerated, but he wasn't impressed with their efforts:

"I certainly would have appreciated a little bit more concern on my part. I saw one person from the US Embassy. One. And they didn't really do much for me. They were just like, 'Are they torturing you?' 'No'. 'OK, goodbye'. I didn't hear anything from them."

Blythe adds that the case might be settled out of court, but otherwise he'll be back on trial in November. "Naturally, there's some trepidation," he says, "but the way I feel about possibly going to prison for five to 10 years really has nothing to do with the fact of the matter that it's the right thing for me to do."

141 comments sorted by best / new / date

    AnnihilationUK
    Ultimate Guitar has more slams than the WWE
    iommi600
    Or RedTube...
    JuteJute
    I should just skip checking these comments. I hate when im reading these articles and then someone throws there and my coffee is on my keyboard and on my screen. But yea i lol'd
    flame843
    i think cracked ran a column a few months back about words in headlines that indicate the story isn't worth reading, and one of them was "slams." it's a really trite word to use, especially when "criticizes" would have been much more appropriate. he's not "slamming" anyone.
    GibsonMan321
    I don't really feel like this was a "slam". He went about his criticisms in a sincere and respectful manner, despite the government REALLY screwing him on this. I'd say his feelings are quite justified.
    ranbat
    I like how Mr Blythe has been one to say that the government needs to keep their nose out of his business, and then when they do, he gets all indignant about it. Typical.
    TheNumber6
    we all know if Blythe was a mainstream pop star our government would probably have made an effort to organize their release and notify them of these charges before hand. when it comes to metal.. noone other than metal heads will care. which is complete bs.
    purplexing
    Why? I don't disagree that if it was a huge star the government would have been more active. But it's not like they said " oh **** metal, they don't deserve our attention". The same thing would have happened with any other civilian that's not very famous.
    TheNumber6
    i know they didnt, but unfortunately metal isnt viewed very highly among government officials, i remember reading articles over the years about how "it corrupts children" and "leads to suicide, depression, blahblahblah" type of things. none of it ever had very concrete evidence. but it leaves a bad light on the genre in the media. regardless im glad Randy is back in the states, and hopefully this matter will be resolved quickly and in Randy's favor.
    oxymoronicman
    Omama? Really? What are you, in second grade?
    Blacken Light
    Um, no what are you a douche Obama Fan Boy? You know he would have the Justice Dept. on the case in a Heart Beat if it were a Hollywood donor or Liberal Rock Star, and the Mainstream Media would be all over the story also
    Anchr
    What I think oxymorinicman was trying to say is: How the flying **** does Obama fit in this story? I personally believe that if a citizen is incarcerated in a foreign country, it is the responsibility an embassy to establish things like legal help. Please elaborate what role Obama plays in such a scenario.
    zillaman
    He is the leader of the country. Which makes this a perfect example. If one of his donors was stuck in a Czech jail, he would have them out in an instant. Randy has nothing to do with Obama, but Obama still makes a good example. If Randy was donating 6 million dollars to Obama every month, Obama would have gotten him out of this somehow. However, Randy was not a major problem for the US embassy, so they had no reason to jump to their feet and help him. The embassy still has other things to do besides focus on a rock star who is in a Czech jail because he probably did something totally stupid during one of his concerts.
    purplexing
    But this argument is ridiculous. The point is that Obama probably has no idea who Blythe is or what the hell is happening. It's not his job to know who everyone imprisoned overseas is. If Blythe was a huge donor, the Obama would probably know who he is. Therefore It is not the matter of Obama ignoring him, Obama just doesn't know of some guy named Randy Blythe. A lot of people here think that Blythe is super famous, which is not true at all.
    millarso
    It is NOT a perfect example at all. If you were President who would you bail out? Your friend or some guy you didn't even know was in prison? You really think Obama is just sitting at his desk thinking "F**k you, Randy"?
    zillaman
    If you were president, and someone was donating millions to your campaign, then you would care if that person has been accused of manslaughter in another country. But since Randy wasn't a huge deal to the embassy, they had no reason to bail him out when they have other things to do.
    purplexing
    But this argument is ridiculous. The point is that Obama probably has no idea who Blythe is or what the hell is happening. It's not his job to know who everyone imprisoned overseas is. If Blythe was a huge donor, the Obama would probably know who he is. Therefore It is not the matter of Obama ignoring him, Obama just doesn't know of some guy named Randy Blythe. A lot of people here think that Blythe is super famous, which is not true at all.
    l0ld4v3
    Yeah, I don't know who he is. People in my country doesn't know who he is. I don't get it either, why would the president of teh United States would address personally to such an issue, when he has to look for bigger stuff. Seriously though, one should be aware of their own legal status, specially if one is prone to traveling, like say, a musician.
    Blacken Light
    Because HE is the PRESIDENT and is the LEADER of this Country that's How? What kind of Juvenile Question is that? And in charge of the Justice dept. he is the Commander in chief, HELLO
    millarso
    I'm sorry man, but no matter what I think about a president, it isn't his job to control every single US affair that goes on. In all likelihood, he never even heard about this. There is nothing juvenile about assuming that the President isn't tinkering with the entire free world. Also the justice department is part of a ENTIRELY DIFFERENT BRANCH. He is most certainly not in charge of the Justice department. Learn about your own country, you clod-hopper!
    scrymusic
    Wow... Government went to bat for girl in Italy but not for Randy.... Shame on them.
    Tyler.Allain
    He's angry and looking for someone to blame for the circumstances he fell into. The U.S embassy had information that would have prevented his incarceration and is therefore a logical scapegoat for his frustration. However, it is not the US embassy's responsibility to monitor the legal status of every U.S citizen and non-citizen occupier in every foreign country all over the world.
    R&FN'Roll
    Wait... Why is it our governments job, to warn a civilian that they are wanted by another country?
    jrodgers
    Uhhh.... Because we pay taxes? Because our government people are OUR employees? Because we are American citizens and our government exists to protect us from foreign threats? I could go on and on. I guarantee if this happened to you, you'd be pretty ticked off
    purplexing
    Being imprisoned is NOT a 'foreign threat'. If it happened to me I would be pissed off too, but that wouldn't make me right.
    zillaman
    No. R&FN'Roll is right. It is not the government's issue. This is a part of the Constitution and bill of rights that involves, free speech, and course of action. Whatever Randy Blythe did do, whether kill the person, shove them, or just being in the wrong place at the wrong time, it was his own actions, not the governments that got him here. That would make this his problem, not the governments.
    jrodgers
    No one is saying that Randy Blythe's problem is the government's problem. This affects the govt in no shape or form. But... the man and his family have, and will continue to have many major problems because of this. However if the govt could just deliver him a simple message saying, "Hey Randy, just so you know, if you enter the Czech Republic they are gonna lock you up in an ex-Nazi torture chamber on ridiculous manslaughter charges, then continue holding you even after youve posted bail TWICE", it would prevent it all from happening? These are the people we both pay ourselves and elect into office. Just my opinion, but I think they owe him, or anyone for matter, that courtesy.
    zillaman
    I see your point. But it still makes me wonder if the government HAD told him, would that be right? Because, of course, he wouldn't have gone to the Czech Republic. The charges didn't seem quite right, but if there is ANY truth in them whatsoever, then not going to the Czech Republic would have been running away from consequences. That's just my view of the story.
    Lemoninfluence
    I get the whole 'let me know I'm wanted for murder' issue, even if I don't necessarily agree with it. But what the hell did he expect the embassy to do? step in and fight his case for him? interfere in another country's legal system? He's a fairly well off musician who was wanted in connection with a serious crime. At most I can expect the embassy to have a list of lawyers at hand that have a good reputation and are well equipped to deal with English speaking clients.
    437
    America interfere's with every other legal system anyway so why not?
    RobertStyx
    It wasn't murder, it was manslaughter. There is a difference. I agree with pretty much everything else you have had to say though. Though, I do feel that the US government should have not only told Randy he was wanted, but should have actually cooperated with the Czech officials in the first place.
    TheNumber6
    he expected his country to show some support for a citizen imprisoned overseas. ive followed this story since the beginning and the US gov made as small an effort as humanly possible to bring Randy home or even get him lawyers to aid his case. but when it comes to people stuck in Iran we do everything in our power to get them back. why? because they were unjustly imprisoned. as was Randy.
    Lemoninfluence
    How was Randy unjustly imprisoned? The only thing that's dodgy about this story is the increase in bail required after it had already been set, but even that could be justified by new information coming to light altering the flight risk etc. Like I said, all they should really be doing is providing him with a list of lawyers and/or looked into the possibility of having him tried in the US, but then there may not be the mechanisms in place to allow that.
    TheNumber6
    because he wasnt the one who pushed the kid, if you viewed the tape the security guard was the one who directly pushed him down into the crowd. randy did too with one arm but the guard put alot of strength behind his push. that much was clear. if anything this was a money extortion because Czech Rep has a bit of an economy/money issue, thus the double bail raise form $200k to $400k.
    jerkass
    lol. yeah, like $400k makes difference to a country.. and I suggest you do the research on your country economy/money issue supposing youre american
    dewitt
    I don't know if you could call the flight risk situation 'new information,' since they arrested him as the band was passing through on a world tour. I pretty much agree with the rest of what you said, though.
    Lemoninfluence
    I said new information altering the flight risk i.e. new information came to light which suggested that he was less likely to return to the country. Maybe something like saying 'I wish my government had told me beforehand so I could have skipped the country on my world tour".
    RP2U
    I would fire my booking agent/manager before getting angry at the government...
    zillaman
    I understand his frustration, but I don't think that the US embassy was going to do any more than it did.
    IbanezJFS
    Why is it the Government' duty to tell you your wanted in another country?
    Anchr
    You wouldn't want to know? I feel it is their responsibility honestly. They knew he was wanted. Why not update Blythe himself on it?
    IbanezJFS
    Well how is the Government suppose to know he's wanted?
    ihartfood
    The article states the Justice Department received a letter from the Czech Republic saying that Randy was wanted.
    IbanezJFS
    I'm still a little skeptical. I mean he bashes the Government left and right and because of that if he would to have gotten a letter in the mail from the US Government. He probably didn't even open it. Knowing him he could have thrown it away. I have met Randy back at OZZFEST 2007 and i gotta tell ya he's kinda of a douche.
    ihartfood
    Well whatever, it's all opinion anyway. I seriously doubt he'd have thrown it away haha and based on the way Randy has handled the entire situation, he seems like a nice and respectable dude.
    kneedraggerfz8
    b/c they were the only ****ers who were notified about it, so it was their responsibility to pass on the info, you stupid ****
    IbanezJFS
    Didn't he say he wouldn't cooperate with the Czech Republic in the article?
    johnfrance
    ....no he said that the government said that to the czech republic.
    Ians Beard
    Because it isn't. He is just another entitled person who wants the gov't to do every stupid thing for them. If it is anyones job, it is band management.
    tonello
    Well, I actually agree with Mr. Blythe. If the government insists on being the ones to makes sure that you are taken care of (ie, Welfare, nationalized healthcare), then they probably should have given him some legal advice as well.
    guitar7masta
    If it were ANY friend/donor of ANY president of ANY party he would have been out in a couple of days.
    Blacken Light
    That's what I am saying, Obama just happens to be the President, at this time....I don't doubt any President from any party would, that's not what I am saying.... I am an Independent, I am not a Blind Follower of any Party
    ihartfood
    well sir you obviously lean pretty far right, just sayin'. I understand what you're getting at, but there are more (ha, pardon the pun) democratic ways to say it than SPECIFICALLY pointing out President Obama. That said it's not in the job description of the President to go oversees to meet with anyone who has been imprisoned.
    Camron62\m/
    it's still bs that America in any shape of form didn't really do anything. except the metal community and fans. like TheNumber6 said up above, totally true.
    Root Beer
    Wow... when he first got out of jail everyone treated him like a hero, and now everyone is slamming him for firing a shots at something that I'm pretty sure we all fire shots at on a weekly basis? He has every right to be upset, even if it wasn't necessarily the governments fault... Just let him vent.
    RUSTDOGG666
    Ya man. You know what I'm sayin? The U.S. Govment better let me know if I got shxt goin on in another country or I'm gonna slam it with an article on UG or maybe some bombs or somethin. Cause that be bullshxt that stuff went down and I'm not warned so I can continue to avoid arrest. If the US ain't helpin me avoid arrest, then they don't deserve my respect. Peace.
    MrFlibble
    I don't know why anyone would expect one country to be A) up-to-the-minute informed and B) have any or attempt to have any influence over another country's legal system to any degree. Guess what, Randy: America does not own or police the world. You need to pay attention to your won shit.
    xxSynxgxx
    The article states that our government was informed of the situation before it happened just saying.
    zillaman
    Yes they were informed, but I don't think it was their job to interfere in this situation. And if they did, then would Randy have skipped going to the Czech Republic? What would that mean? If he was truly guilty of anything that the Czech Rep has charged him of, then he would be avoiding consequences for his actions. That would be bad for him, and for the US.
    --ESTRANGED--
    oh but if a man is wanted by the US they go in all guns blazing if said man's country wont co-operate. **** the US government. the biggest dictatorship on ****ing earth.
    KISSmyass666
    WE SHULD HAVE SENT CHUCK NORRIS & BRUSE WILLIS TO GET'EM! END OF STORY! BEER!
    KISSmyass666
    i ment bruce willin i was type'in fast >_< holy crap the backlash
    iommi600
    Holy shit dude, did you shot heroin in your fingers? Also, Chuck Norris jokes haven't been ANY funny for some time...
    tnbassplyr
    Ya.. if it was Justin Bieber, the media, cnn, msnbc, and most every other tv channel would have been on this like white on rice. But no, not one channel (that I saw anyway) covered the story or even mentioned the fact that we had an American musician that was extorted for over 200k by an entire government, and used the excuse of him being a flight risk to hold him in custody. Then to beat it all.. his own government knew of the incident not to mention the fact that they did nothing to inform him of the efforts of the czech government. Randy should raise hell.. i would!
    purplexing
    Bieber is more famous than Blythe, of course the media would have had more coverage.
    Nelshizzle
    He should just never go back to that country. I wouldn't if I had a murder charge and they couldn't indict me. Also lol @ him trying to blame the government for not helping him. That's some hypocritical shit right there.
    RR24Metul
    Shut up.
    iommi600
    Oh dude, you're telling a moderator to shut up... may God have mercy on your soul.
    nnb
    iommi it was stupid, but the comment isn't that bright. @nelseasn, so your saying essentially for him to forfeit 400K and become fugitive? Not to mention that just because they didn't co-operate the the checs original requeste they wouldn't do it later, especially because if you run it usually means your admitting to being guilty (regardless if its true or not). Not to mention that just because the US didn't help dosen't mean another country wouldn't, with the whole touring thing is makes it easy for the checs to know where is going to be at any given time. lol at him wanting the government to help? No SHIT! they should have done more if thats all the did, periodical check ins to make sure his alright, be in contact with his family ect.. hell even just moral support, thats the minimum I would expect from the embassy.
    HigherThanAMile
    I find it difficult to believe that this wasn't covered in the news in Prague and no fans ever made an attempt to make it known on the bands website. I find even more difficult to believe that the Police didn't contact the venue, the promoter, and eventually the bands management once the investigation was opened. The Embassy is not set up to act as counsel for Americans who are overseas and violate the law or are charged with a crime. You, as a guest in another country are responsible for knowing the laws of the country you're traveling to. This isn't news, do your research. Taxes do not pay lawyer fees for the brain that made that statement. He has a right to be upset and so do the rest of you. That's not going to chnage the fact that there was no obligation by the government to notify Blythe. Lastly, what date was this alleged advisement of charges sent anyway? Separate your emotions from your judgement.
    jerkass
    Well, it really wasnt covered in the news, so the only and proper way was used to sort this out. but US government refused to cooperate and didnt even tell the wanted person which I find totally unbelievable the whole time this thing is going on. and yes the only chance left to investigate this was to wait for the guy to return and then arrest him...
    jrodgers
    This "brain" as you sarcastically called me, made the statement concerning taxes. If you had read my statement at all, before you blasted both it and me, you would have known that I said no such thing about the government using our tax money to provide us lawyers. The word "lawyer" was not even in my post. I was simply alluding that as a tax paying US citizen, our government has the moral responsibility to give you fair warning if they become aware of some foreign renegade justice system out to get you. If they posess that information, then WITHOLD it from you, they are hanging you out to dry and just as implicated in the whole mess. It even flies in the face the basic foundation that our OWN justice system is based on, and our rights pertaining to it. This of course though from the same government responsible for the Patriot Act.
    HigherThanAMile
    A little sensitive? You were anonymous until you outed yourself. Don't complain to me about that. You are, whether you like it or not, ignorant of due process and the law of the US as well as Prague. But there's no need to be nasty about it.
    jrodgers
    Go ahead and explain to all of us the due process of law in the Czech Republic then wont you? And the extradition policies between the US and Czech Republic since you are apparantely an expert? This isn't about what the US govt is "legally obligated" or not to do, its what it SHOULD do. If you were in Randy Blythe's shows, and found out that by in-action your government let you walk into this ambush, you would be every bit as pissed. End of story.
    HigherThanAMile
    Its not my job to educate you and fulfill your understanding of law in this country or any other. I've spent a lot of my own time and money educating myself, and if you want to understand the document that ensures your right to due process, look it up.
    kmcharger21
    Shut up randy
    TheJaneTrain
    Shut up? If you were accused of murder by a foreign country and the U.S. gov didn't tell you, you'd be a bit upset, no? Stop thinking about yourself, dude.
    Ians Beard
    The US gov't has better shit to worry about than what your (IMHO)shitty band is doing. Like, how shitty of a job the US gov't is doing. Glad he is out of prison, but don't expect the US gov't to keep tabs on your baggage in a foreign country. That is YOUR PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY to know you are wanted for manslaughter.
    jrodgers
    How are you supposed to know you are wanted for manslaughter, if the justice system that charges you goes to every extent possible to hide it from you? Lets play a game where we assume that Randy is %100 innocent, but ends up getting convicted and sentenced to 10 years in a Czech prison. This would be a travesty, but the one chance our government had to protect Randy would have been not witholding the information that he was wanted there in the first place.
    Ians Beard
    So it is the job of our gov't to keep tabs on everyone that leaves the country and inform them of "secret" crimes they are wanted for? I'm sick of stupid ppl looking for handouts from the gov't and asking the gov't for everything. This falls under WHICH branch of the Gov't? I have not read 1 thing to suggest that the Czechs went to "every extent possible" to hide facts, start a conspircacy all just to nail some small time singer for some small time band.
    Ians Beard
    I sure hope the gov't warns me of that wine I stole in Paris next time I go there. Cause that is there job, right?
    jrodgers
    I'm sorry but you must have missed out on some major aspects to this story. The Czech govt DID conceal the fact that he was wanted for manslaughter. No one was ever even notified, not even the venue where this happened, that this kid had died. That was the whole shitty thing about it, they basically sat around for 2 years waiting to ambush this guy, based on an accusation that was ridiculous in the first place
    Ians Beard
    Actually I have kept up to date on this story and you are crazy. Did you know that Randy was chanting "come on up" before this fan made his way up? The truth is he should be on trial, maybe he is guilty, maybe he isn't. He did play a part in someones death though and the facts deserve to be reviewed in the court of law. It is NOT the gov't job to keep track of what countries you are wanted in and what ones you aren't wanted in. The Czech gov't made no attempt to cover it up, it states in this article plain and simple that Czech gov't contacted our Justice Department.
    nnb
    ians.....ok what happend to the security guard who did most of the pushing? If you've been keeping up with the story to a point that you know that he was screaming "come on up" . Furthermore, yes it is the governments job to TELL you your wanted in another country. @ all those saying its not the job of the government to tell you they received a notice your wanted for murder in another country, I would love to hear back from you if this ever happend to you.
    HigherThanAMile
    DO you know if you are wanted for manslaughter in every State or city you've ever been in? Do you know if you're wanted for questioning in any State or city you've ever been in? Do you know if your local and State law enforcement is required by law to inform you that you have a warrant out for your arrest? Do you know that in the US, ignorance is no excuse for not knowing or violating the law? Call your city DA or County Clerk and ask them those questions. Then get back to all of us with your answers.
    jrodgers
    I'm not exactly sure what point you are trying to make here, but I'll take a stab at it. What with the murky circumstances of the alleged incident, the length of time since it happened, him (or anyone else for that matter) having no idea this even happened, and all the extradition policies between two nations, the whole situation is very extraordinary. You seem to be comparing it to just your eveyday average manslaughter case (or really any type of case with a warrant issued) within US borders. Had this same situation happened within US borders, it would have played out completely differently. Because of that every argument you just made renders moot
    HigherThanAMile
    LOL You obviously didn't contact your local DA or Clerk, and completely glazed over the fact that the courts in the US do not recognize ingnorance as a defense. I suspect that foreign courts of law don't either. Look up the definition of ignorance because I suspect you think it is an insult. You don't KNOW without a doubt that no effort were made by ANYONE to contact Blythe at his LAST KNOW ADDRESS, and you contiue to ignore the fact that this is WHY bands have tour managers. Finally, I suggest you take a Civics class so you understand exactly how the Governments role in your life defined.
    Uncle Manwich
    I think the expression "slam" is out of the context. I don't think Randy is "slamming" his country, he's just disappointed that they made absolutely no effort to help him. I think his patience, compassion and kindness really makes him a role model for any musician out there, especially metal-heads who often get a bad reputation and judged for no reason. If only the world was more like Randy!
    GunShadow
    New UG Drinking Games: 1)Take a drink everytime an article has some varriant of the word 'slam' in it. (you'll be buzzed) 2)Take a drink everytime someone makes a comment hating on Dave Mustaine. (you'll be hammered in seconds)
    bobmarley_fan
    WAAAAAH! That would be like warning someone in the states that they have a Warrant here. You are the ****ing least of their concerns. Why do you think you are so f u c k i n g special. LETS DROP EVERYTHING AND HELP RANDY BLYTHE!!!! F U C K YOU and your narcissistic thoughts.
    Ibeanez
    I wouldn't expect anyone on UG to actually know what the government's role is in the U.S., but they did exactly what they should have done for this silly little child. Nothing.
    vabrownsfan89
    I think its funny how a lot of people on this site (most likely the conservative Obama haters) are getting pissed off that the Federal Government and its bureaucracy wasnt on top of when and where Randy Blythe was going outside the country. Apparently Obama hasnt turned the US into a "big brother" nanny state just yet...
    gateway01
    It's like when your mom says "Why didn't you clean your room?" and you say "Why didn't you tell me to?"