Home Main Prosecutor: Kansas militia members wanted to kill Muslims

Prosecutor: Kansas militia members wanted to kill Muslims

FILE - This Oct. 14, 2016 booking photo provided by the Sedgwick County Sheriff's Office in Wichita, Kan., shows Patrick Eugene Stein. Stein is one of three members of a militia group are standing trial on charges alleging they were plotting to bomb a mosque and a southwestern Kansas apartment complex IN 2016 where Somali refugees live. Gavin Wright, Stein and Curtis Allen have pleaded not guilty to charges including conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction. Opening statements in the trial began Thursday March 22, 2017 in Wichita. (Sedgwick County Sheriff's Office via AP File)

Three militia members plotted to bomb a Kansas mosque and apartment complex housing Somali immigrants to kill as many Muslims as possible, a federal prosecutor said Thursday.

In her opening statement at their trial, Risa Berkower told jurors that the three men described the Somalis as “cockroaches” and planned to carry out an attack in the meatpacking town of Garden City, Kansas, about 220 miles (350 kilometers) west of Wichita, until a fourth man revealed their plot to the FBI and authorities arrested them.

Patrick Stein, Gavin Wright and Curtis Allen have pleaded not guilty to several charges, including conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction.

A militia member tipped off federal authorities after becoming alarmed by the escalating talk of violence, prosecutors have said. The man later agreed to wear a wire as a paid informant. The government’s case features months of profanity-laced recordings in which militia members discussed plans.

According to prosecutors, Stein was recorded discussing the type of fuel and fertilizer bomb that Timothy McVeigh used in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, which killed 168 people. Stein was arrested when he delivered 300 pounds (135 kilograms) of fertilizer to undercover FBI agents to make explosives.

Attorneys for the three men are expected to make their opening statements later Thursday.

SHARE