There is no proof that neo-Nazi Kent McLellan has fought in Ukraine

By: John Faerseth
September 26 2023

Share Article: facebook logo twitter logo linkedin logo
There is no proof that neo-Nazi Kent McLellan has fought in Ukraine

Screenshot from video (Source: Facebook/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict False

Neo-Nazi Kent McLellan has been on parole or in prison at the times when he claims to have fought in Ukraine.

Claim ID 3b411fda

In a video currently shared on social media, the American neo-Nazi Kent “Boneface” McLellan claims to have been in Ukraine several times as a volunteer fighter. McLellan states that he went to Ukraine for the first time in 2014, right after the Euromaidan revolution, to join an unspecified Ukrainian volunteer battalion appearing to be the nationalist battalion Right Sector. 

He claims to have joined the international neo-Nazi group Misanthropic Division through Right Sector. McLellan also claims to have been a member of the Ukrainian Azov regiment and that the CIA initially set him up with Ukrainian nationalists. 

As a result, McClellan accuses Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy of being more afraid of Azov than the Russians and has failed to arm it properly due to this. According to McLellan, Zelenskyy eventually sent Azov troops to die at the Azovstal works in Mariupol or be taken prisoner by the Russians. 

American far-right conspiracy theorist Laura Loomer has shared the video. It has also been broadcast on the Russian state propaganda channel RT. 

In fact

Kent McLellan has been active in the American far-right scene for many years. In an interview with a far-right podcast in August 2023, he claimed to have come to Ukraine for the first time in 2014, and joined the nationalist Right Sector battalion. He went back in 2015 to join the Azov battalion. In January 2022, before the Russian full-scale invasion began, he returned and fought in what was now the Azov regiment until April 1. On April 4, he was back again, fighting alongside the Azov Regiment during the siege of Mariupol until he was lifted out of the Azovstal steelwork in a helicopter. He returned to the U.S. around May 27.  

However, investigative outlet Bellingcat reports that McLellan was on probation in Florida from 2012 to 2016. He was thus barred from traveling abroad without permission. McLellan also posted images taken in Florida on the Russian social media site VK in 2015, the same year he later claimed to have spent parts of in Ukraine. 

A police report shows that McLellan was arrested and charged with battery in Escambia County, Florida, on April 1, 2022, the same day he claims to have returned briefly from Ukraine. Court documents also show that McLellan was present at his subsequent arraignment hearing on April 22, when he was again supposedly in Ukraine. 

On the same day, he submitted an affidavit in support of a request for a public defender, signing and dating it “4/22/2022.” In the affidavit, McLellan stated that he had no income, bank savings, or other financial resources or support. By his admission, he thus lacked the financial means to travel back and forth to Ukraine. 

British national Aiden Aslin, who was detained at Azovstal, wrote on X that there are no verifiable clues of locations in Ukraine in photos and videos of McLellan. Aslin has also stated that McLellan could not have escaped Mariupol by evacuation helicopters, as the only people allowed on these were the severely injured who required hospitalization. 

A photo of McLellan with the insignia of the Azov regiment was found to be Photoshopped, according to The Atlantic Council's Digital Forensic Research Lab (DFRLab). 

The verdict

There is currently no proof that Kent McLellan has ever been to Ukraine. Claims of his presence in the country conflict with evidence of him being on probation and attending court hearings in the U.S. We have therefore rated this claim as false. 

Would you like to submit a claim to fact-check or contact our editorial team?

Global Fact-Checks Completed

We rely on information to make meaningful decisions that affect our lives, but the nature of the internet means that misinformation reaches more people faster than ever before