"Obviously, our people in Georgia are very interested in ‘Absolved’ and the arrests over there. I saw on your blog that you won’t talk until someone tells you how the story broke. It’s pretty simple – the feds sent a news release yesterday. Also yesterday, the indictment was unsealed. It mentions ‘Absolved.’"
BACKGROUND OF THE INVESTIGATION
5. On March 17, 2011 the government's confidential human source (CHS1) consensually recorded a clandestine meeting involving members of a fringe group of a known militia organizationl with the fringe group calling itself the "covert group." The meeting occurred at the residence of Frederick W. Thomas (THOMAS) located at 2265 Dean Mountain Road, Cleveland, Georgia, 30528 1 and attendees at the meeting included THOMAS, Emory Dan Roberts (ROBERTS), and others. At the outset of this meeting, the attendees began discussing and then displaying various weapons each one was carrying on his person. THOMAS mentioned to the group that he had enough weapons to arm everyone at the table. ROBERTS and CHSl either did not have weapons, or did not make them visible.
6. THOMAS became the primary speaker for the meeting and began discussing overt and covert operations for the group. He mentioned a fictional novel he had read on-line in which an antigovernment group killed a large number of federal Department of Justice attorneys, and then he stated, "Now of course, that's just fiction, but that's a damn good idea. 1I THOMAS described a scenario in which he felt would be the "line in the sand" that would result in the activation of militias. THOMAS believed that soon, during a protest action, a protestor would be shot. It is his opinion the militias would act and respond by openly attacking the police. He then openly discussed having compiled what he called the "Bucket List" which is a list of government employees, politicians, corporate leaders and members of the media he feels needed to be "taken out" to "make the country right again." THOMAS told the group he sent the list to a web blog.
7. During the meeting, THOMAS made the following statements:
a. "The right people have to be taken down, and taken down soon."
b. "There is no way for us, as militiamen, to save this country, to save Georgia, without doing something that's highly highly illegal. Murder. That's fucking
illegal, but it's gotta be done."
c. "When it comes time to saving the Constitution, that means some people gotta die."
8. When murder was mentioned, ROBERTS said he knew people in Habersham County [Georgia] who had a substance that could kill people with a very small amount. CHS1 suggested ROBERTS was talking about ricin, and someone else agreed, adding that ricin is made from castor beans. The conversation then went into a discussion about castor beans and possible ways to obtain them.
9. THOMAS spoke of the need for the group to acquire more weapons, ammo, food, and survival gear and then discussed the need for the group to establish a silent means of taking people out. THOMAS suggested silencers for handguns, stating, "In order to do what we want to do, take out the right people, we have to have some silent means of doing it. That means suppressors on handguns."
10. THOMAS stated they needed to find a machinist with the ability to manufacture silencers and not register them with the ATF. THOMAS said this was necessary to prevent them from being traced back to an owner if they were lost. THOMAS also mentioned a gun store near the Georgia/South carolina border that manufactures silencers and he commented that they should consider "hitting the truck," meaning they should steal the silencers from the trucks.
11. On April 3, 2011, CHSI consensually recorded a meeting with THOMAS and ROBERTS at a restaurant in northeast Georgia. The attendees talked about acquiring ammunition and equipment, particularly silencers for firearms. THOMAS suggested that they buy, steal, make, or attack a manufacturer's truck in order to obtain the silencers. THOMAS also talked again about his "Bucket List" of people he thought should be killed. During the meeting, THOMAS stated that he thought they could "fight off a SWAT team." He also stated, "I've been to war, and I've taken life before, and I can do it again."
12. On April 16, 2011, CHSI consensually recorded another meeting of the "covert group, /I again at the residence of THOMAS located at 2265 Dean Mountain Road, Cleveland, Georgia, 30528. Attendees included CHSl, THOMAS, ROBERTS and others. During the meeting THOMAS discussed the need for the group to start moving forward with taking action in some of their previously discussed plans, including a number of assassinations on various government officials.
13. THOMAS also explained to the others present that he intended to model their actions on the plot of an online novel called Absolved. The plot of Absolved involves small groups of citizens attacking United States federal law enforcement
representatives and federal judges. THOMAS expressed his belief that they should conduct a number of assassinations on various government officials, and he particularly expressed a desire to kill Department of Justice (DOJ) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) employees.
14. During the meeting, THOMAS made the following statements:
a. "Civilian government operatives is who we're going to be shooting at: IRS, ATF, FBI, and the COpS."
b. "Who is the primary topics, targets? DOJ. Everybody in DOJ. That includes judges, ATF, IRS, and the hierarchy thereof."
c. "I could shoot ATF and IRS all day long. All the judges and the DOJ and the attorneys and prosecutors."
15. On April 29, 2011 and April 30, 2011, CHS1 consensually recorded conversations between, CHS1, THOMAS and ROBERTS while traveling to and from a meeting held in south Georgia on 04/30/2011. During a conversation on April 30, 2011, THOMAS mentioned that, while at the meeting, he spoke to a second confidential source (CHS2) about acquiring silencers. THOMAS reiterated the need for the group to obtain silencers to shoot people quietly. THOMAS suggested they obtain unregistered, .22 caliber long rifles, cut them down and thread them to accommodate a silencer. During the ride, THOMAS asked ROBERTS whether he (ROBERTS) thought they should try to grow their group larger, "or stick to what we are planning on, assassinating 4 or 5 guys and that's it?" ROBERTS replied, "I think probably we need both."
16. On May 17, 2011, CHS1 met with THOMAS and ROBERTS to further discuss the group's plans. (This meeting was not recorded. ) CHS1 reported that THOMAS indicated the group was ready to move forward with acquiring silencers. At some point in the conversation, explosives were mentioned and THOMAS became very excited and said the group really needed to get some explosives. THOMAS mentioned that he is very disgruntled with the IRS and the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF). THOMAS indicated that he was considering driving to the Atlanta area to survey/locate IRS and ATF buildings.
The warrant also says that "Agents also learned that THOMAS's e-mail address (is) firstname.lastname@example.org."
I checked my email logs alphabetically for sent and received and found no emails displayed from that address, but there was an "Ahab" who posted comments on the blog using blogger and I rather suspect that this was him. I have made no effort as yet to track down his posts, if they are his.