Domestic Terror Charges Against Three in Chicago

     CHICAGO (CN) – A Cook County grand jury returned an 11-count indictment against three men who allegedly planned to attack President Obama’s campaign headquarters with Molotov cocktails during the NATO summit in Chicago last month.
     Police arrested the men a few days before the May 20-21 NATO summit, in a raid on an apartment in the Bridgeport neighborhood of Chicago, the Chicago Tribune reported.
     Indicted Wednesday were Brian Church, 20, of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Jared Chase, 28, of Keene, N.H.; and Brent Vincent Betterly, 24, of Oakland Park, Fla.
     They are charged with providing material support to terrorism, conspiracy to commit terrorism, four counts of possession of an incendiary device, conspiracy to commit arson, solicitation to commit arson, attempted arson, and two counts of unlawful use of a weapon.
     The Chicago Tribune reported that the men, whose supporters call them the NATO 3, also planned to attack Chicago police stations and Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s home with Molotov cocktails.
     Few details of the alleged conspiracy were provided in the indictment.
     Church’s attorney Michael Deutsch said in a statement National Lawyer’s Guild Chicago website: “The prosecutor controls the grand jury and is able to obtain a rubber-stamped indictment for any charges it desires. The fact that the indictment charges the defendants with 11 serious felonies, including ‘terrorism’ and two separate ‘conspiracy’ charges for the alleged possession of 4 makeshift incendiary devices shows that the state is intent on continuing its strategy to sensationalize this case.”
     The men are being held in solitary confinement in Cook County Jail on $1.5 million bonds, the Tribune reported.
     This is the first case filed under Illinois’ state anti-terrorism laws, which were enacted after Sept. 11, 2001.

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