New indictment filed amending charges against 12 charged with attempting to overthrow Laos

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Twelve Californians charged with plotting to overthrow Laos' communist government must return to federal court after prosecutors amended charges against them.

The indictment Thursday by a grand jury in Sacramento includes some wording changes as it alleges the 12 conspired to send weapons and fighters to Southeast Asia to attack Laos.

Those charged include a retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel and 11 members of California's Hmong community, many of whom fought for America during the Vietnam War. All are free after pleading not guilty to the earlier indictment.

A new arraignment date has not been set.

Defense attorney Bill Portanova criticized prosecutors. He says they have repeatedly altered their allegations against the defendants.