Houston storage facility plays unwitting role in alleged terrorist plot

April 1, 2014 0
Houston storage facility plays unwitting role in alleged terrorist plot

A rendezvous at a Houston storage facility was one of Robert James Talbot Jr.’s last acts before FBI agents arrested him in an alleged terrorist plot to blow up government buildings and mosques, rob banks and kill cops, authorities say.

Undercover FBI agents busted Talbot, 38, after the March 27 visit to the storage facility, as he was on his way to allegedly rob an armored car, according to an FBI affidavit. Talbot had placed two plastic C-4 explosive devices in his backpack, the affidavit says, and indicated he would bomb the armored car.

Court documents did not identify the storage facility.

At the storage facility, Talbot instructed an undercover agent to read a “manifesto” to Talbot, another undercover agent and an undercover informant. The four men had gathered at the storage facility to review Talbot’s plan for the armored-car heist.

“We must rebel,” the manifesto said. “There is no other option … . Blood and bullets are the only two things that will change this world, short of divine intervention.”

According to the affidavit, Talbot had set up a Facebook page for the “American Insurgent Movement.” Talbot described the page as “a Pre-Constitutionalist Community that offers those who seek True patriotism and are looking for absolute Freedom by doing the Will of God. Who want to restore America Pre-Constitutionality and look forward to stopping the Regime with action by bloodshed,” the affidavit says.

The Facebook page was aimed at recruiting sympathizers who were trained in guerilla warfare and could help carry out what Talbot had dubbed “Operation Liberty,” according to the affidavit. The FBI started tracking Talbot’s right-wing antigovernment campaign in August 2013.

Talbot, who lives in the Houston suburb of Katy, faces several federal charges.

Alluding to the masterminds of the Oklahoma City bombing, Terry Denny, who lived in the same boarding house as Talbot, told Houston TV station KPRC: “I believe this kid was as savvy or maybe more savvy than Timothy McVeigh. Honestly, I do. If he had a Terry Nichols with him, who knows what he would do?”

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