Neo Nazi leader arrested for planning a Baltimore power grid attack
Founder of the Neo-Nazi group Atomwaffen Division was arrested for planning an attacks in Baltimore, Maryland that would leave the city in 'Cascading Failure'.
The FBI has detained two persons in Maryland on suspicion of plotting an attack on the electrical grid in Baltimore, similar to an attempt conducted last year in North Carolina.
According to an FBI criminal complaint, Sara Clendaniel, 34, and Brandon Russell, 27, planned to use rifles to target five electrical substations in the Baltimore region in an effort to "completely destroy" the city, known to be of majority Black constituency.
“If we can pull off what I’m hoping … this would be legendary,” Clendaniel told an FBI informant on January 29, as cited by the criminal complaint, which also noted that similar conversations were held with Russell who sought to find accomplices for the act.
The filing further depicted the criminality of the assailants as Russell was quoted saying “I think you should wait until like a week after it starts snowing for that other thing we talked about,” adding that the “goal is for when most people are using max electricity” and that “follow on [attacks] could lead to cascading failure costing billions of dollars.”
The idea, Clendaniel explained to the informant, was that “it would probably permanently completely lay this city to waste if we could do that successfully.”
The city, which is home to about 576,000 people in Maryland, has been the subject of recurring segments in conservative media in recent years. This has served as an additional opportunity to suggest that crime is on the rise under US President Biden Joe Biden, as the left in the US demands more police accountability and reform.
"The threat posed by domestic violent extremists is evolving and persistent," said Thomas J. Sobocinski, special agent in charge of the FBI's Baltimore field office, in the Department of Justice statement which announced the arrests.
It is worth noting that the charges they are facing could land the couple a 20-year prison sentence.
Read more: Kyle Rittenhouse: The White-Only American Dream (Part I)
Assailants known to DoJ
Well-known by the Department of Justice, Russell was released from jail earlier in August 2021 following a five-year for possession of bomb-making materials.
Moreover, Russell founded the neo-Nazi organization Atomwaffen Division.
Clendaniel was also not new to the DoJ, after having been previously imprisoned for robbery with a machete. The two met while they were incarcerated.
Similar but unrelated attacks were also carried out in North Carolina, Oregon, and Washington according to the police.
Read more: Kyle Rittenhouse: The White-Only American Dream (Part II)