Didnt this happen about 10 years ago. Newspapers across the USA carried the front page head line that members of the Viper Militia were arrested for a plot to blow up the Phoenix Federal Court House. Of course in the end there was not plot to blow up the court house or anything else. The feds only got one conviction and that was a trivial conviction. Most of the people copped pleas for trivial crimes, not because they were guilty but to save the huge expense of going to trial. And the whole case died with a wimper that was not heard outside of the Phoenix area.


Seven Are Charged With Plot to Blow Up Sears Tower
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Published: June 23, 2006

Federal prosecutors said today that seven Miami men who wanted to blow up the Sears tower in Chicago sought help from a man they believed to be an al Qaeda representative, but who in fact was an informant.

The seven men, who lived in a windowless, one-story warehouse that was raided by F.B.I. agents on Thursday, were charged in a federal indictment released today with conspiring to support a foreign terrorist organization.

The indictment charged that they pledged to support a supposed al Qaeda plot, described to them by the informant, to blow up offices of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and took pictures of federal buildings in Miami that were potential targets.

A law enforcement official in Washington said on Thursday night that though the Florida group had cased some potential targets, any plotting was at an early stage and it was not clear that the men were capable of organizing a large-scale attack.

The bulk of the indictment lists a series of meetings beginning Dec. 16th last year between one of the men, Narseal Batiste, and the purported al Qaeda representative, in which Mr. Batiste asked for aid in waging "a full ground war" against the United States, according to the indictment.

Mr. Batiste said his "soldiers" intended "to 'kill all the devils we can,' in a mission that would 'be just as good or greater than 9/11,' beginning with the destruction of the Sears Tower," the indictment said.

But in the final meeting detailed in the indictment, on May 24th, Mr. Batiste told the informant that "he was experiencing delays because of various problems within his organization," although he said he wanted to continue his mission and to support al Qaeda.

The aid he sought from al Qaeda included$50,000 in cash, firearms, vehicles, radios, binoculars, bullet-proof vests and military boots. The boots were the only items delivered, after a meeting in which Mr. Batiste provided shoe sizes, according to the indictment. Mr. Batiste was also given a digital camera used to take the pictures of federal buildings requested by the informant.

The other men indicted were Patrick Abraham, Stanley Grant Phano, Naudimar Herrera, Burson Augustin, Lyglenson Lemorin and Rothschild Augustin. All seven men pledged loyalty to al Qaeda, according to the indictment, but the others besides Mr. Batiste are described only as driving him or the informant places or as attending meetings between the two.

Neighbors described a militaristic group, but one that did not seem threatening. One neighbor interviewed by the A.P. said they seemed "brainwashed."

"They would come out late at night and exercise," Tashawn Rose, 29, told the news service. It seemed like a military boot camp that they were working on there. They would come out and stand guard."

CNN today broadcast an interview with a young man named Corey who said he had been part of the group that lived in the warehouse, which he said was called "the Seas of David." He said the group was peaceful, although he described its members as "soldiers."

Law-enforcement officials on Thursday said that the group had posed to immediate danger, and officials at the Sears Tower said in a statement that "Law enforcement continues to tell us that they have never found evidence of a credible terrorism threat that has gone beyond criminal discussions."

Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales scheduled a press conference for later this morning to announce the indictments, with a second press conference scheduled in Miami to follow. In addition, the F.B.I. director, Robert S. Mueller III, plans to give a speech this afternoon on domestic terrorism.