Two men accused of planning to strike Marines in Virginia
Two men charged in North Carolina last month with plotting terrorist attacks overseas also planned to strike a Marine Corps base in Quantico, Va., authorities said Thursday.
The two were among seven suspects arrested in July on accusations that they conspired to provide material support to terrorists and conspired to murder, kidnap, maim and injure people overseas.
A new indictment unveiled Thursday charged Daniel Patrick Boyd, the group’s alleged ringleader, and Hysen Sherifi “with conspiring to murder U.S. military personnel” in connection with the planned assault on the Marine Corps base, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Raleigh said in a statement.
The statement offered no details, except to say that Boyd had undertaken reconnaissance of Quantico and obtained maps of the base in order to plan the attack.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office said that Boyd also possessed armor-piercing ammunition, and that he had stated that it was “to attack the Americans.”
“These additional charges hammer home the grim reality that today’s home-grown terrorists are not limiting their violent plans to locations overseas, but instead are willing to set their sights on American citizens and American targets, right here at home,” U.S. Atty. George E.B. Holding said.
All seven suspects in the North Carolina case were denied bail after a hearing in Raleigh last month at which prosecutors played FBI recordings as evidence that they had discussed waging jihad as part of a conspiracy to conduct attacks in foreign nations.
The United States has been on heightened security alert since the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001, and authorities have publicized efforts to crush domestic terrorist cells before they have a chance to act.
Prosecutors have said that Boyd trained in terrorist camps in Pakistan and Afghanistan and fought against the Soviets in Afghanistan.
They also allege that Boyd and several of the defendants went to Israel in 2007 to fight against Israelis but returned without success.
Boyd is a U.S. citizen. Sherifi is a native of Kosovo and a legal permanent U.S. resident.