* United States v. Begolly (E.D. Va. July 14, 2011) (indictment alleging solicitation to carry out terrorist attacks and distribution of explosives knowledge)
A fascinating case. Details from the press release below, and the indictment is attached:
WASHINGTON – Emerson Winfield Begolly, 22, of New Bethlehem, Pa., was indicted by a federal grand jury in Alexandria, Va., today for allegedly soliciting Islamic extremists to engage in acts of terrorism within the United States and posting bomb-making instruction materials online.
According to the two-count indictment, Begolly has been an active moderator of a popular, internationally known Islamic extremist web forum, the Ansar al-Mujahideen English Forum (AMEF), used by its members to promote and distribute jihadist propaganda. The indictment alleges that since July 2010, Begolly has placed a number of postings encouraging attacks within the United States, including the use of firearms, explosives and propane tanks against targets such as police stations, post offices, synagogues military facilities, train lines, bridges, cell phone towers and water plants.
Following the reported shootings in Northern Virginia at the Pentagon and the Marine Corps Museum in October 2010, Begolly allegedly posted a comment online that praised the shootings and hoped the shooter had followed his previous postings encouraging similar acts of violence that might “seem small but cause big damage.”
On Dec. 28, 2010, Begolly allegedly posted links to a 101-page document that contains information on how to set up a laboratory, conduct basic chemistry and manufacture explosives.
The indictment charges Begolly with solicitation to commit a crime of violence, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, and distribution of information relating to explosives, destructive devices and weapons of mass destruction, which carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.
On Feb. 2, 2011, Begolly was indicted for allegedly assaulting federal agents and firearms-related charges in the Western District of Pennsylvania. He faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted of the charges filed in that district.