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Threats against federal judges and families reportedly on the rise

The murder of a New Jersey federal judge’s son has highlighted a disturbing trend that authorities fear is on the rise — threats against federal judges and their families.

According to the US Marshals Service, which protects federal judges, there were 4,449 threats and inappropriate communications against protected persons in 2019, ABC News reported. In 2015, that number was 926.

Over that same time period, the number of threats investigated rose from 305 in 2015 to 373 in 2019, peaking at 531 in 2018, the network reported.

In addition, inappropriate communications or threats to protected court family members have also been on the rise, according to the Marshals — to 4,542 in 2018, up from 768 in 2014.

On Sunday night, the college-student son of Judge Esther Salas, Daniel Anderl, was shot dead in the family’s home in North Brunswick, New Jersey, while her husband, prominent attorney Mark Anderl, was also shot multiple times and is in critical but stable condition, police sources told The Post on Monday.

Salas was not injured and the suspect, identified as Roy Den Hollander, was later found dead from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound in Rockland County, sources said.

Salas, who is now under 24-hour protection, had received threats in the past and authorities are investigating whether there is any connection between the threats and the shooting, ABC News reported. A package or envelope addressed to the jurist was found near the man’s body, sources told The Post.

In 2017, federal Judge James Robart also became the target of malicious threats after he issued a temporary restraining order on President Trump’s first travel ban.

According to the American Bar Association, before Robart left the Seattle, Washington, courthouse where he presided, his personal information was put out on the internet, along with his wife’s information.

Outside the home of federal judge Esther Salas, where her son was shot and killed and her defense attorney husband was critically injured in North Brunswick, New Jersey.
Outside the home of federal judge Esther Salas, where her son was shot and killed and her defense attorney husband was critically injured in North Brunswick, New Jersey.REUTERS

Trump also unleashed a Twitter attack on the judge — leading to an estimated 1,100 serious threats against him, the ABA said.

The Marshals say the increase in threats against judges and their families is due to “improved effectiveness in data collection and reporting of potential threats.”

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