Last 2 Amish defendants appeal convictions in Ohio

CLEVELAND - The last two of 16 Amish found guilty in beard- and hair-cutting attacks on fellow Amish in Ohio have appealed their convictions.

A son-in-law and nephew of ringleader Sam Mullet Sr. filed appeals Thursday with the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati. Appeals by all 16 defendants are now before the court.

The defendants, all members of Mullet's extended family, had challenged the constitutionality of the hate crimes act as overly broad. The trial judge in Cleveland rejected the claim.

They were convicted in five attacks in 2011 in apparent retaliation against Amish who had defied or denounced Mullet's authoritarian style.

Mullet was sentenced to 15 years in prison. Family members who carried out the attacks got sentences ranging from one to seven years.

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Amish beard-cuttings

Convicted Ohio Amish leader loses bid for release Convicted Ohio Amish leader loses bid for release

The leader of 16 Amish men and women found guilty of hate crimes for cutting the hair and beards of fellow members of their faith has lost another request to be released from prison.