FBI Raid Isis Terror Cell Plotting To Attack Church

(RepublicanPress.org) – The Islamic State (ISIS) is a terrorist organization that was formed from al-Qaeda. The United States has had the group on its terrorist designation list since 2004. The organization operates in Iraq and Syria, and its tactics are especially brutal. While it is most active in the Middle East, ISIS has followers from all over the world — even in the United States. Recently, a local man from Idaho was arrested for trying to support the brutal organization.

On April 6, the Office of Public Affairs with the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced the arrest of 18-year-old Alexander Scott Mercurio. An FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) investigation uncovered a disturbing plot. The affidavit states that Mercurio pledged his loyalty to ISIS and planned to carry out a terrorist attack against churches in Coeur d’Alene on April 7 for the group. He allegedly intended to “incapacitate his father,” restrain him, and take his guns to “use for maximum casualties.” The suspect also reportedly planned to use knives and fire to carry out the task.

Attorney General Merrick Garland commended the FBI for taking Mercurio into custody before he could act. The AG said the man is “now charged with attempting to support ISIS’ mission of terror and violence” on American soil. Garland said the DOJ will continue to find and stop any individuals who attempt to “commit acts of terrorism” in the US. Special Agent in Charge Shohini Sinha called the case an “eye-opener to the dangers of self-radicalization.” The agent encouraged citizens to report any suspicious activity to the FBI, as keeping the American people safe is its top priority.

If found guilty, Mercurio could spend up to 20 years in federal prison for attempting to support a known terrorist organization. The suspect has been remanded and is awaiting his first appearance in court. It’s unclear when that will take place.

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