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White House News (白宮消息) | Oct 18, 2020

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FBI thwarted plot to kidnap Michigan governor 02:04

Federal judge rules five men accused of plotting to kidnap Michigan's governor will stand trial

Oct. 16, (CNN)A federal magistrate ruled Friday that five men will stand trial in connection with the alleged plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

Brandon Caserta, Adam Fox, Kaleb Franks, Ty Garbin and Daniel Harris were charged with conspiracy to kidnap.

US Magistrate Judge Sally Berens said that there was ample evidence of probable cause and bound them over for trial.During the preliminary hearing, Fox's attorney, Helen Nieuwenhuis, and Garbin's attorney, Gary Springstead, questioned FBI Special Agent Richard Trask about the actions of the armed extremist group.


He testified that he heard discussion of the plot to kidnap Whitmer before President Donald Trump's tweet in mid-April saying "LIBERATE MICHIGAN!"...     more

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Maps, chats among evidence released in alleged kidnapping plot against Gretchen Whitmer

Oct. 18 - GRAND RAPIDS — The U.S. Attorney's Office in Grand Rapids on Friday released a wide range of photos, videos and other exhibits introduced into evidence at a preliminary examination for six men charged with conspiring to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

Exhibits introduced before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sally Berens include:
  • Videos of live-fire training exercises.

  • Still photos and videos from surveillance conducted outside Whitmer's family cottage in northern Michigan.

  • An image of a map of the area around Whitmer's cottage allegedly drawn by plot ringleader Adam Fox. Prosecutors redacted parts of the map so it would not show where the house is located.
  • Images of chat threads among the various defendants, discussing their plans. The chats were encrypted, but the FBI and prosecutors were able to de-encrypt them, because a confidential informant who was part of the anti-government group was included in the chat strings.
  • Photos of various firearms.
  • A self-made video of one of the defendant's tirades against the police.
The Detroit Free Press requested release of the exhibits.

Some of the photos and videos were shot by one of two confidential informants who had been accepted by the Wolverine Watchmen as a member of the anti-government group, sometimes described as a militia group.

On Friday, Berens wrapped up a preliminary examination and said there is enough evidence to send five of the six defendants to trial. The sixth man is awaiting extradition from Delaware. All six men have been in custody since their Oct. 7 arrests.
In addition to the federal defendants, eight other men are facing terrorism-related charges filed by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel.     source

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