US authorities have arrested a Coast Guard lieutenant who compiled a hit list of prominent political targets. Christopher Paul Hasson was allegedly "dreaming of a way to kill almost every last person on the earth."
Prosecutors said Christopher Paul Hasson appeared in court on Thursday on gun and drug offenses but that those charges were "the tip of the iceberg."
Federal officers found 15 firearms — including several rifles — and more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition inside Hasson's basement apartment in the Maryland town of Silver Spring. Court papers said they also found steroids and human growth hormones.
Hasson compiled a hit list — on a spreadsheet — of prominent Democrats that included House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and several presidential hopefuls. However, his violent ambitions apparently went far further.
In a June 2017 draft email that was submitted to the court, Hasson wrote that he was "dreaming of a way to kill almost every last person on the earth." He was also said to be pondering how he could acquire anthrax and toxins to create botulism or a deadly influenza.
Double hit planned
In that same email, Hasson discussed "biological attacks followed by an attack on food supply," describing these as an "interesting idea."
Prosecutors claim that Hasson visited thousands of gun websites and studied military tactical manuals on improvised munitions. The judge in his case on Thursday denied bail to the 49-year-old Hasson.
Hasson, who works at Coast Guard headquarters in Washington, had apparently espoused extremist views for years.
In February 2018, Hasson searched the internet for the "most liberal senators," as well as searching to find out if they, and Supreme Court judges, had Secret Service protection.
He was said to routinely read parts of a manifesto written by Norwegian mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik. The document advocated "focused violence in order to establish a white homeland," prosecutors said.
Breivik, in July 2011, killed eight people in downtown Oslo with a car bomb, and then shot dead 69 people, many of them teenagers, at a youth camp.
rc/rt (AP, AFP, Reuters)