Man Planned To Attack White House With Rocket And Explosives

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Authorities arrested a man in Atlanta who allegedly sought to attack the White House and other Washington D.C. landmarks.

Hasher Jallal Taheb, 21, of Cummings, Georgia, met with undercover agents on Wednesday and traded his auto for semi-automatic assault rifles, remote-controlled explosives and grenades, and an anti-tank rocket, according to an Federal Bureau of Investigation affidavit.

U.S. Attorney Byung J. (BJay) Pak says Taheb planned to use an improvised explosive device and an anti-tank rocket.

Taheb allegedly told the informant during that since he couldn't travel overseas, he wanted to hit local targets, like the White House and the Statue of Liberty, and meant to be a "martyr". On August 25, 2018, Taheb put his vehicle up for sale and an Federal Bureau of Investigation informant showed interest in buying it, the complaint said. Taheb allegedly told the undercover agent that the explosives would be inside the backpacks and would be detonated with cell phones.

It wasn't immediately clear whether Mr Taheb had an attorney who could comment on the allegations.

Investigators believe Taheb was working on his own, Chris Hacker of the FBI's Atlanta field office said Wednesday.

Following the exchange of weapons from the undercover agent, he said he planned to drive directly to Washington and carry out an attack.

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He added that he wanted "to do as much damage as possible" and expected to be a "martyr".

The criminal complaint accuses Taheb of plotting to destroy a government building, which is punishable by five to 20 years.

The FBI says that by December, Mr Taheb had escalated his vitriolic rhetoric about the USA and Israel and hoped to include a specific unnamed synagogue, the Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial in his attack on the capital.

In August, Taheb is said to have put his vehicle up for sale and was soon contacted by an Federal Bureau of Investigation informant.

Law enforcement allege that he had in his possession a "hand-drawn diagram of ground floor of the West Wing" of the White House.

The FBI arrested (the alleged terrorist) shortly after he traded his auto for weapons and explosives that the FBI gave him.

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