Katarzyna Jasko and Gary LaFree compared leaders and followers in extremist groups with regard to their engagement in political violence. In a sample of 1331 individuals who have committed ideologically motivated violence in the United States they found that even though leaders were more ideologically committed, they were at the same time less likely to engage in violent acts. Interestingly, leaders in extremist groups seem to share many characteristics with leaders in noncriminal organizations. Specifically, in comparison to followers, they are more often male, older, and they are more likely to belong to an ethnic majority.
You can read more in the >>new paper published in Aggressive Behavior<<