Authorities have arrested a self-proclaimed white nationalist Coast Guard officer who plotted terror attacks on USA soil and had compiled a hit list that included prominent Democrats, journalists and other public figures.
A U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant assigned to the headquarters in Washington "is a domestic terrorist" whose potential victims included numerous Democratic members of Congress, federal prosecutors said in a court filing.
Investigators found a draft of an email from June 2017 in which Hasson wrote he was "dreaming of a way to kill nearly every last person on the earth". Last February, he searched the internet for the "most liberal senators" and also asked, "Do senators have ss (Secret Service) protection" and "Are supreme court justices protected", according to the court filing.
Officials arrested Hasson on Friday on charges of illegal possession of a firearm as well as possession of a controlled substance. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) • Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) • Sen.
The complaint asserts that Hasson was influenced by the work of Norwegian domestic terrorist Anders Breivik, who was convicted in 2012 of murdering 77 people in a carefully orchestrated terror attack.
"The defendant is a domestic terrorist, bent on committing acts unsafe to human life that are meant to affect government conduct", prosecutors said in a memo to the juge. He also wrote, "I am dreaming of a way to kill nearly every last person on earth".
He was found to be in possession of 15 guns, including shotguns and handguns, as well as more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition, when he was taken into custody in Silver Spring, Maryland, the report said.
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Hasson will appear in court on Thursday.
In that letter, Hasson identifies himself as "a long time White Nationalist, having been a skinhead 30 plus years ago before my time in the military". Court papers say Hasson described an "interesting idea" in a 2017 draft email that included "biological attacks followed by attack on food supply". It's unclear whether Hasson had a specific date for an attack, but the government said he had been stockpiling weapons for at least two years. However, Hasson's public defender argued that the number of firearms found in Hasson's apartment is "modest, at best" for many gun collectors in other parts of the country.
Hasson has been working at the U.S. Coast Guard headquarters in Washington, D.C., since 2016. His arrest was first noted by researchers from George Washington University.
Prosecutors say Hasson espoused extremist views for years.
Prosecutors say that after viewing a story about Scarborough calling Trump "the worst ever", Hasson looked up information about Scarborough, including where his show "Morning Joe" was filmed and the commentator's former address.
Agents with the FBI field office in Baltimore and the Coast Guard Investigative Service arrested Hasson, FBI Baltimore spokesman Dave Fitz confirmed. He has also ordered more than 4,200 pills of the narcotic Tramadol since 2016, along with synthetic urine to allegedly bypass possible random drug screenings at work, they said.
The court filings paint a picture of an angry and drugged man who has been seeking answers in neo-fascist and neo-Nazi literature for decades, and who is desperate to make a "lasting impression on this world".