Three right-wing, Trump praising, “militia-men”, from rural Kansas were found guilty on Wednesday of a 2016 plot to slaughter Muslim refugees living in an apartment complex in Garden City.
The Huffington Post (@huffpost) reports, Patrick Stein, Gavin Wright, and Curtis Allen were found guilty on charges of being in possession of, and making weapons of mass destruction and conspiracy against civil rights. Wright was also found guilty on a charge of lying to the FBI. The defendants face a possible “life in prison” sentence when they go back for sentencing.
The jury reached their guilty verdict after shortly less than a day of deliberating. During closing arguments, in true Trumpian fashion, the defendants’ lawyers accused the FBI of overstepping and targeting the group because of rhetoric, that while hateful, was protected by the First Amendment.
The prosecution’s case depended largely on secret recordings of the group made by Dany Day, an FBI informant who masqueraded as a militia member. Day infiltrated the three men’s group for months as he recorded conversations of the group’s members. An undercover officer working on behalf of the FBI also met with Stein. The undercover cop posed as an arms dealer who shared the group’s anti-Muslim views and beliefs.
In court, jurors heard recording after recording of the men expressing a murderous hatred of Muslims, who they called cockroaches.
“The fucking cockroaches in this country have to go period. They are the fucking problem in this country right now. They are the threat in this country right now.” Said defendant Stein who went by the code name “Orkin Man.” In another recording, the men could be heard mapping out targets on Google Earth, dropping a “pin” labeled “cockroaches” over areas they knew to have a high Muslim population. They eventually settled on Garden City as their target. An apartment complex that is home to many Somali Muslim immigrants and the Mosque where they prayed.
The prosecution presented evidence that the men had started to collect explosive materials. According to the recordings made by Day, their plan was to detonate bombs at the apartment complex in November 2016. They wanted the explosions to occur during Muslim prayer times when more potential victims would be there. “Packed in like Sardines” was how defendant Stein put it. He said he hoped the bomb’s shockwaves would “make Jello of their insides.” Now, Stein better hope somebody doesn’t make Jello of his insides and bootyhole in prison!