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Tag: entrap

No, FBI Did Not Entrap Suspects in Michigan Governor Kidnapping Plot, Judge Rules

The original six suspects accused of plotting to kidnap Michigan Gov. Whitmer.

By Steve Neavling

A judge on Tuesday rejected claims by three men accused of plotting to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer that they were entrapped by the FBI. 

Jackson County Circuit Judge Thomas Wilson declined to dismiss the case, saying the FBI probe did not “escalate” the alleged plot, The Detroit News reports .

“I just cannot, in reviewing this matter, (see) that the government … somehow pressured any one of these individuals to participate in anything, or to get in line with this way of thinking,” Wilson said, referring to their conservative, pro-militia ideology. “That was the very reason that we got the confidential informant in the very beginning was as soon as he had joined the group and learned that they were talking about harming police officers and potentially politicians that he contacted the FBI because of his concern out of what potentially could happen.”

The three defendants, Paul Bellar, 23; Joseph Morrison, 27; and his father-in-law Pete Musico, 44, are set for a trial on Sept. 12.

They are charged with providing material support to terrorism, felony firearm possession, and gang membership. 

They claimed an FBI informant induced them to hatch the plot. 

Two co-defendants, who pleaded guilty to the plot, have agreed to help prosecutors.