Two Alleged Members Of Three Percenters Militia Group Guilty Of Plotting To Kidnap Michigan Governor

The United States government won its second attempt to prosecute two men accused of conspiring to trigger "a second American revolution" by kidnapping Gretchen Whitmer, the Michigan Governor.

Adam Fox (left) and Barry Croft Jr (right)
Adam Fox (left) and Barry Croft Jr (right)

Four months after a federal judge declared a mistrial in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in the same case, 39-year-old Adam Fox, and 46-year-old Barry Croft Jr have been convicted. In the first trial, two other defendants were found not guilty.

Both men, who the government claimed were members of the Three Percenters militia group, were also convicted of conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction - an explosive device that prosecutors said was going to be used in an attempt to hinder the police response to the planned kidnapping.

Croft was also found guilty of a separate charge of possession of an explosive device.

Both men are looking at a potential life sentence.

Prosecutors claimed that the plan was intended to end the Democratic governor's mandates to stop the spread of the coronavirus in the early stages of the pandemic.

Assistant US Attorney Nils Kessler told jurors that the men wanted to send the United States into open conflict, "they wanted to set off a second American Civil War and a second American Revolution."

Referring to Whitmer, Kessler said, "They didn't want to just kidnap her. They wanted to execute her."

The men were convicted of plotting to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer
The men were convicted of plotting to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer

Whitmer, who is up for re-election in November, spoke after the verdicts and warned about the dangers of "radicalized domestic terrorism", she said: "I cannot - I will not - let extremists get in the way of the work we do. "They will never break my unwavering faith in the goodness and decency of our people."

The Detroit News revealed that the jury, made up of 12 members, deliberated for around eight hours split across two days.

While making preparations, Fox allegedly compiled a list of tools the men would need to carry out the kidnapping, including a hood to cover Whitmer's head, and handcuffs. Prosecutors also alleged that they built a makeshift house to simulate breaking into Whitmer's holiday home in northern Michigan and abducting her.

The attorneys for Fox and Croft criticized the case against their clients and told jurors that it was nothing more than entrapment by the government, stating that neither man had committed any crimes and argued the use of FBI informants in the case.

Joshua Blanchard, an attorney for Croft, told jurors that "the FBI should not exist to make people look like terrorists when they aren't."

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