A New Jersey man who discussed blowing up Trump Tower in New York City was arrested on terrorism charges Wednesday.
“The suspect, identified as Jonathan Xie, of Basking Ridge, was arrested Wednesday morning on charges of attempting to provide material support to a designated terror group, making false statements and transmitting a threat of interstate commerce,” according to NBC4. “Though he spoke of the attacks, authorities say there was no specific plot.”
The 20-year-old reportedly sent money abroad to Hamas, a Palestinian terror organization, and also discussed bombing the Israeli Consulate in New York City.
Xie, who tried to enlist in the Army earlier this year and lied on his applications, saying he was not associated with any terrorist organizations, allegedly spoke of his plans on Instagram.
Last month, FBI surveillance saw Xie outside Trump Tower in Manhattan. Shortly thereafter, according to Instagram records, he posted two photos to his account, one with the words “[S]hould I bomb Trump Tower,” a “Yes/No” poll and an emoji of a bomb imposed over the Trump Tower building image.
Records show Xie then posted on Instagram, “Okay, so I went to NYC today and passed by Trump Tower and then I started laughing hysterically . . . s*** I forgot to visit the Israeli embassy in NYC … i want to bomb this place along with trump tower,” according to the criminal complaint.
He also said on Instagram that he would “find a way” to join Hamas, videoing himself with their flag and brandishing a handgun.
“I’m gonna go to the [expletive] pro-Israel march and I’m going to shoot everybody,” he reportedly said.
On a separate occasion, he talked on Instagram about killing pro-Israel demonstrators.
“I want to shoot the pro-israel demonstrators . . . you can get a gun and shoot your way through or use a vehicle and ram people . . . all you need is a gun or vehicle to go on a rampage . . . I do not care if security forces come after me, they will have to put a bullet in my head to stop me.”
He posted on his Instagram page last year that he sent $100 to someone in Gaza whom he believed was a Hamas operative. He said he was “pretty sure” that his activities were illegal but that he “[didn’t] give a damn.”
Xie is facing decades in prison for each count of attempting to provide material support to terrorists.
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Two Men Arrested for Planning Terrorist Attack on Trump Tower in Support of ISIS
They’re from South Carolina and Texas.
The FBI has arrested two men and charged them with planning terrorist attacks on locations such as New York’s Trump Tower in support of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
Kristopher Sean Matthews of South Carolina and Jaylyn Christopher Molina of Texas have been charged with conspiring to provide material support or resources to a designated foreign terrorist organization.
Matthews adopted the pseudonym Ali Jibreel, and Molina the name Abdur Rahim.
The pair allegedly plotted to attack government facilities and New York’s Trump Tower, discussing their plans in jihadist chatrooms. They were busted by federal informants within these honeypots.
“We need to stick together, we need to defeat them, we need to take a lot of casualties,” said Molina of the pair’s plotting. Molina spoke of his allegiance to ISIS in the server. “You are my enemy (America) and never will I wear your flag … but I will raise the black flag of Allah.”
They also spoke of the proposition of traveling to Syria in order to fight for ISIS, an idea that would’ve almost certainly resulted in their quick capture or death. American citizens caught fighting for ISIS on foreign battlefields have proven to be a legal nightmare for American military and civil law to manage.
Both were arrested on Monday. They face a maximum penalty of twenty years in prison, with a lifetime of supervised release.
These clowns didn’t get very far in actually planning acts of violence in support of ISIS, and they seem to have somewhat missed the boat- ISIS has largely been defeated by American-backed Kurdish militias and the Iraqi and Syrian governments. But they deserve punishment nonetheless.
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