Wednesday, 17 October, 2018

New York Man Built 200-Pound Bomb To Detonate On Election Day

The skyline of Washington DC including the US Capitol building Washington Monument Lincoln Memorial and National Mall is seen from the air Man charged over US mid-term elections 'bomb plot'
Steven Clarke | 12 October, 2018, 12:26

Federal authorities have arrested a NY man on charges of unlawfully manufacturing an explosive device, after they say he constructed a 200-pound bomb which he meant to detonate on the National Mall in Washington D.C. on Election Day next month.

When authorities searched Rosenfeld's house they discovered a functional explosive device that weighed about 200-pounds.

His stated reason for these acts was to draw attention to his political belief in "sortition", a political theory that advocates the random selection of government officials.

Rosenfeld had previously constructed several smaller explosive devices for practice, according to the complaint.

"Rosenfeld concocted a twisted plan to draw attention to his political ideology by killing himself on the National Mall in Washington, D.C - risking harm to many others in the process", Geoffrey Berman, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of NY, said in a statement.

Law enforcement agents say the huge explosive device was found at the suspect's home in Tappan, New York state, on 9 October.

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Paul Rosenfeld of Tappan wanted to kill himself in order to bring attention to his "radical political beliefs", authorities said.

Paul Rosenfeld, 56, was arrested in Rockland County after authorities got a tip from an unidentified individual in Pennsylvania that Rosenfeld was allegedly communicating with about his plot.

Agents also found empty canisters of black powder often used in firearms and artillery, the complaint said. FBI Director Christopher Wray says agents are now investigating about 1,000 homegrown terror threats across the country. "Fortunately, his plans were thwarted by the quick action of a concerned citizen and the diligent work of a host of our law enforcement partners and the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force".

Charged Wednesday with unlawful manufacture of a destruction device and interstate transportation and receipt of an explosive, he faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted on both counts.

He appeared before a magistrate at a federal courthouse in White Plains, New York, on Wednesday afternoon.

Each of the charges carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison if he's found guilty.

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