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FBI Arrests Georgia Militiamen Trying to Buy Pipe Bombs, Thermite

Federal authorities charge that three Georgia militia members went to a meeting in Cartersville to buy pipe bombs and explosives. The men reportedly talked online about a strike against government agencies.

Federal agents have arrested three reported Georgia militia members for obtaining pipe bombs and explosives. File|Patch
Federal agents have arrested three reported Georgia militia members for obtaining pipe bombs and explosives. File|Patch

Two of three Georgia militia members arrested while allegedly trying to buy pipe bombs and thermite as part of a plan to strike at government agencies appeared in court Friday on federal charges.

According to a news release from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Georgia, Brian Cannon and Cory Williamson appeared in federal court for preliminary and bond hearings. The men face federal charges of conspiring to receive and possess unregistered destructive devices, specifically pipe bombs and thermite devices. According to a federal complaint filed this week, the defendants sought to obtain the explosive devices as part of a militia operation against the TSA, FEMA and other targets. 

"This case is a stark reminder of the threat we face not just from abroad, but from within our own borders from our own citizens,” said United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates. “When plans turn violent, law enforcement must step in to protect our communities from harm. Fortunately, the FBI was able to stop these defendants before they were able to carry out their plans." 

Ricky Maxwell, acting special agent in charge of the FBI Atlanta field office, said: “The FBI can no longer wait to respond to the aftermath of a radicalized individual's or group's threats. Instead, we have to bring our investigative and analytical assets to bear in getting ahead of those threats and potential attacks and do so within the rule of law.” 

Authorities say that between Jan.  23 and Feb. 15, Cannon, Williamson, and Terry Eugene Peace, the third defendant, participated in online chat discussions  about carrying out an operation against the government that was to be launched in February.

Peace encouraged members of the militia to review guerrilla warfare tactics, small unit tactics, accumulate supplies, and prepare their families, authorities charge. Peace also identified targets such as “…TSA, DHS, non-emergency FEMA, road blocks, etc.” The discussions were reported to the FBI, and the FBI then began consensually monitoring the communications. 

To prepare for the mission, Peace allegedly asked a cooperating witness to provide them with 12 pipe bombs and two thermite grenades. Peace, Cannon and Williamson subsequently planned to meet with the federal witness to take possession of the items after they were made. 

On Feb. 15, authorities allege that Peace, Cannon and Williamson drove to a location in Cartersville to meet the cooperating witness. Authorities had given the witness 12 inert pipe bombs and two inert thermite devices that were constructed to look like real explosives. The three defendants were arrested as they took possession of the devices, a news release says.

Terry Peace, 45, Brian Cannon, 37, and Cory Williamson, 28, of Rome, Ga., all had initial appearances in federal court on Feb. 18. Cannon and Williamson were detained at the conclusion of the hearing. All three were charged in a criminal complaint on Feb. 18.

Bob B February 24, 2014 at 01:24 AM
Jamie - these idoits weren't after ordinary people - they were after government people. Unless you work for the government, I don't believe you have anything to worry about. (If this is a true story).
Ben Novick February 24, 2014 at 01:48 AM
Peace is a terrorist
Heather DeVies February 24, 2014 at 08:22 AM
john, they weren't buying plumbing. They were buying premaid bombs after stating online that they wanted to start the second revolution and attack the government. The FBI was right to step in. They would have hurt ordinary people, they threatened power stations, water treatment facilities, and other so-called "government" facilities including a police station. Who works there? Ordinary people. Who would be without water and power? Ordinary people. They are domestic terrorists, and should be charged with treason. And no, it is not made up FYI to those saying this was made up by the media. If it was made up, it would be everywhere, not just local georgia news, the media is actually keeping this fairly quiet because of all the radicals out there who are stupid enough to think that these terrorists are martyrs and would follow suit. I cannot believe the stupidity of half the people commenting here. If theis was a police state, they would have been arrested a long time ago as well as all their family and friends just for good measure. I would not be speaking to you idiots right now. If it was not for our Constitution we would not be discussing this, and nobody would be able to suggest that they were martyrs in the first place. So go find a real dictatorship and complain there.
Heather DeVies February 24, 2014 at 08:50 AM
Also, as it is these guys are only being charged with federal weapons charges and are looking at a MAXIMUM of ten years in prison. Nothing else. I don't think they'd be getting off so easy in a police state. If anything, our government is far too lenient in these cases. But, then again, stupid people would just get mad at the mean old government for taking the poor terrorists off the streets, right? Dont take away their rights just for wanting to blow stuff up! Mean, terrible FBI, trying to protect the law abiding citizens.
Iris Dandi February 24, 2014 at 10:12 AM
I have lived in a police state and this is not one. However, the US has its problems, but more with Big Money and Citizens' United eroding our freedom.
henry eroh February 24, 2014 at 11:48 AM
this is wrong but can you imgine what our gov plans and does all the time- they care nothing about our country and its people-send our people to be KILLED in countries that should be eliminated from the face of this planet but not by our people being killed- there are buttons for that- do not respect our gov and esp gbam bam
Harry Ball February 24, 2014 at 11:49 AM
Of course it is not a police state. It is normal to use the IRS on your political opponents along with trying to place the FCC in news agencies to "monitor" them. In addition using the NSA to monitor cell phone traffic and computer communication is also really normal. Killing American citizens by drone, without a trial, is normal too. Yeah that's the ticket!
seer February 24, 2014 at 01:33 PM
Hey- all of you govt-worshipping dummies- are those "kill switches" soon to be installed on cars and cell phones going to be for "your own good"?
seer February 24, 2014 at 01:36 PM
Speaking of "freedom"- love to see the Patch take down posts that they don't agree with(that contained nothing vaguely offensive)-freedom of speech my ass!
Tony February 24, 2014 at 02:32 PM
Its hard to figure out how people like Ted Nugent can get away with insulting and telling the President to do un-natural things to his body with machine guns , but roams the planet freely. Why are there two sets of standards, I think anybody who publicly goes on TV and insults the President should be arrested, you can't be any more unAmerican than insulting the President on Tv in America.
brenda February 24, 2014 at 02:40 PM
Some of the most hateful people can be found in bagerstan, usa
Thomas Van de Stroet February 24, 2014 at 05:39 PM
Tony Sorry but your another idiot, one among millions. Your another one of the sheeple being lead to the slaughter, sure hope you dont breed.
Grace February 24, 2014 at 05:47 PM
Matt Wayne doesn't know crap about our history or the Founding of this country! Obviously! These 3 guys want to attack their own government? I bet they would already be in Gitmo if they had even considered this during W's 8 years of screwing us all over. We are worried about foreign threats, ok but we don't need to be paranoid. We should be worrying about the threat from within. The wackos who would want to take over our democracy and make it the playtoy of billionaires, special interests and religious groups. Treason should be punished as that. And what should be considered treason? Threatening your own country!
Paul Klinger February 24, 2014 at 07:35 PM
Tony to tell your president he is a pompous a**hole is my freedom of speech but it sounds like you are one of those brainwashed idiots that want that right taken away
Paul Klinger February 24, 2014 at 07:37 PM
Grace I would take 20 more years of bush compared to one more year of this nitwit we have now
Paul Klinger February 24, 2014 at 07:40 PM
I know this doesnt pertain to this but for the people that didnt vote for obama ask around and see who did because most that did wont admit it now or they hide on the internet and defend him as long as no one knows who they are
Patrick Rodgers February 24, 2014 at 07:47 PM
Unfortunately, there are radical people in all groups, including those who suggest they are for America. While we may not agree with government, the things they do or the people doing them, it should be duly noted that they were elected by a majority of voters. To suggest violence against the government, is not the American way. In this case, excellent work by the FBI by taking these guys off the streets before they hurt innocent people.
Paul Klinger February 24, 2014 at 08:13 PM
Patrick rodgers unfortunately not everyone is elected by majority vote our great leader haha was elected by electoral votes which to me is the biggest load of crap because it gives different states more power of election
Frank Zoccola February 24, 2014 at 08:20 PM
It seems you forgot that George Bush was also elected by electoral votes not majority vote. I am sure it in the back of your pea sized brian and besides Mr Obama was elected by both electoral and majority vote
seer February 24, 2014 at 08:54 PM
electronic voting is ad fixed as a Chicago election
Paul Klinger February 24, 2014 at 09:07 PM
Frank if you were one of the majority votes for obama then you are the one who has a pea sized brain. And as I can half interpret what you say , I can tell you voted for him and you are probably sitting at home on your lazy a** while I work to pay for your obama life
Greg Brooks February 24, 2014 at 09:37 PM
Lock them idiots up. Remember the Olympics pipe bomb in Atlanta, yes Georgians the Russians just beat you.
Cheryl February 24, 2014 at 10:51 PM
I sure wish all you complainers would have whined and moaned and marched and picketed when Bush set up all these spying programs and rolled out the DRONES under his watch. And opened Gitmo and is guilty of war crimes and torture, etc. That's what started things with all the wackos in this country. Now EVERYBODY wants to shoot somebody up or everybody, and they're getting the rest of the loonies on board with them. Republicans = a culture of rape and violence and intimidation.
Harry Ball February 25, 2014 at 02:05 AM
Last I checked Democrats was the party of choice for rapists, and violent criminals. Intimidation, such as sending the IRS after his opponents and trying to get the FCC to 'monitor' the newsrooms, is an Obama tactic. The rate of spying on Americans has skyrocketed since Obama took office: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/28/warrantless-electronic-surveillance-obama_n_1924508.html
jMichael February 25, 2014 at 02:24 AM
I am amazed at the utter immaturity displayed here. The bare facts are that a trio of toy soldier paranoids got tired of their tree fort, forsook their secret handshake for a Facebook presence, and used that forum to plot a murderous rampage across the American conscience. That these creeps were caught is tribute to our government's vigilance and dedication............................ ........................................................................................... So here we find a clique of feckless Sunshine Patriots seizing the opportunity to toss flatulent smoke bombs at President Obama with the risible expectation that someone, somewhere, will think less of him. Sadly, the stench merely pollutes their already rank and fetid lives.
Gwen King February 25, 2014 at 03:50 AM
I smell a setup and 3 chumps. This is rather like arresting the 3 stooges for being stupid....nuf said....but hey nice work feds :O
Phil Collins February 25, 2014 at 08:29 AM
Seeds of distrust are all over America today as our Government has grown out of Control and Greedy Politicians from the White House, Congress and the Senate attempt to steal our nation away from Hard Working, God Fearing Folks. Still no one has the right to use Violence as a solution to the problem and the Feds will place them where they belong.
jMichael February 25, 2014 at 08:39 AM
Nicely said, Phil Collins.
David Clack February 25, 2014 at 04:48 PM
Colonist used violence against the British and we celebrate it every year on July 4th. I'm not advocating violence but you have to look at it from that perspective too.
Shripathi Kamath March 02, 2014 at 11:55 PM
Bob B February 24, 2014 at 01:24 AM Jamie - these idoits weren't after ordinary people - they were after government people. Unless you work for the government, I don't believe you have anything to worry about. (If this is a true story). _________________________________________________ Yes, because their bombs are smart when they go off in a govt. office. It'll only get the gubmint fellas. Brilliant, Bob.

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