Two men were acquitted and the jury deadlocked in the trial of two others in a case involving an alleged plot to kidnap Democratic Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer.
Adam Fox, Daniel Harris, Brandon Caserta, and Barry Croft each faced a kidnapping conspiracy charge. Harris and Caserta were found not guilty, while the charges against Fox and Croft ended in a mistrial.
The kidnapping plot had allegedly been discussed at a meeting in Ohio around June of 2020, and plans were hatched straight through until October – just prior to the elections – when six of the men were first arrested.
Fourteen individuals overall were arrested in the bizarre plot, with 13 pleading ‘not guilty.’
The one man who pleaded guilty agreed to testify against the others and was sentenced to six years and three months for his role in the domestic terrorism case.
The Whitmer “kidnap” plot was used to attack both Trump supporters and opponents of Whitmers ludicrous covid regime. Now a jury agrees that the whole thing was a concoction by the FBI. https://t.co/pTj61Xlw6S
— Alexander McKay (@ARmckay82) April 9, 2022
Whitmer Kidnap Case Falls Apart
The New York Times describes the latest results of the Whitmer kidnap case as “a major blow to the Justice Department, which during the Biden administration has made domestic terrorism one of its top priorities in the aftermath of the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol.”
The Times notes the lawyers for the defendants had successfully argued the “supposed plot” had been “conceived and nudged ahead by a network of FBI agents and informants.”
“Issues with the actions of some FBI agents also loomed over the trial, though little of that was discussed explicitly in front of jurors,” they added.
Remember when countless journalists, pundits, and politicians screeched with such righteous certitude about the Governor Whitmer kidnapping plot, as though it were established fact, when the only thing that’s now been established is that it was a botched FBI entrapment plot
— Michael Tracey (@mtracey) April 8, 2022
Defendants in the Whitmer case have insisted they were victims of entrapment by an overzealous and severely compromised FBI investigation.
A shocking Buzzfeed report from late last year indicated the case was being “complicated” by an “array of issues” involving the FBI’s handling of the case.
“The case seemed like a lock,” they reported at the time, “until an informant and one FBI agent were charged with crimes, another was accused of perjury, and a third was found promoting a private security firm.”
FBI Investigation Into Alleged Michigan Governor Kidnapping Plot Is a Mess (an informant and one FBI agent were charged with crimes, another was accused of perjury, a third was found promoting a private security firm, among other problems):
— Max Abrahms (@MaxAbrahms) December 17, 2021
Plot Was Trump’s Fault
The alleged plot to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer was used by the media to portray Trump supporters and Republicans as violent extremists just before the 2020 presidential election.
Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, in an interview with CNN, said the plot was “very serious” and “dangerous.”
“I can tell you from my own experience having dealt with literally dozens and dozens of similar plots during my own time in the FBI that this plot has all of the hallmarks of a very serious, dangerous situation that we are all fortunate the FBI and partners have gotten in the middle of,” he said.
It seems they got a little too ‘in the middle of’ the supposed plot.
Whitmer also blamed former President Donald Trump’s rhetoric for inciting the plot against her.
“When our leader speaks, their words matter. They carry weight. When our leaders meet with, encourage, or fraternize with domestic terrorists, they legitimize their actions, and they are complicit,” she said. “When they stoke and contribute to hate speech, they are complicit.”
Add this to the many reasons the *2020 election gets an asterisk: @JoeBiden falsely blamed Trump for an attempt to kidnap @GovWhitmer for which 2 defendants have been acquitted amid questions about the FBI’s role in fomenting the plot. https://t.co/jVxUsp4SkD via @BreitbartNews
— Joel Pollak (@joelpollak) April 8, 2022
Biden Points Finger At Trump
President Biden at the time also pointed the finger at Trump.
“White supremacists and these militias are a genuine threat. I’ve got to compliment the FBI and the police agencies for what they did and how they stepped up. But look, the words of a president matter,” Biden said.
Michigan investigative journalist Charlie LeDuff scoffed at the case against those who allegedly plotted to kidnap Whitmer, saying the claims “stunk” from the start.
“These guys were yakking off on Facebook, like we all do. It went overboard, the FBI gets wind of it and starts leading these guys down the path. I don’t know about the rest of the media, but I said this thing stunk,” LeDuff told Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
“Jury reads the same verdict,” he continued. “There’s a difference between mouthing off and then the feds walking you to a case.”
Carlson back in June of 2021 had alleged undercover agents with the FBI may have orchestrated a vast majority of the plot against Whitmer.
“In other words, nearly half the gang of kidnappers were working for the FBI,” he said.
Tucker Carlson & @julie_kelly2 Discuss The Buzzfeed Report About The FBI’s Involvement In The Governor Whitmer Plot & The Striking Similarities It Has To January 6th
Tucker: “So what does this suggest about January 6th, before you dismiss it as a ‘conspiracy theory?’” pic.twitter.com/f7WCV3zIp6
— The Columbia Bugle (@ColumbiaBugle) July 22, 2021
Sanborn Dodges Questions From Cruz
While there is officially little evidence that the FBI had any role during the Capitol riot, this case falling apart and the seemingly universal understanding that the bureau had attempted to entrap the defendants will renew interest.
It was just three months ago that FBI Executive Assistant Director of National Security Jill Sanborn repeatedly dodged questioning from Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) about whether or not agents from the bureau or confidential informants had participated in the January 6 riot.
Under questioning by Cruz as to the role of agents or informants in the riot, Sanborn repeatedly responded, “I can’t answer that.”
.@SenTedCruz: “Did any FBI agents or confidential informants actively participate in the events of January 6th? Yes or no?”
FBI’s Jill Sanborn: “I can’t answer that.” pic.twitter.com/Z5Sj1tSyNx
— CSPAN (@cspan) January 11, 2022
“How many FBI agents or confidential informants actively participated in the events of January 6th?” Cruz asked.
“Sir, I’m sure you can appreciate that I can’t go into the specifics of sources and methods –” Sanborn began before Cruz rephrased the question.
“I can’t answer that,” Sanborn replied.
“Did any FBI agents or confidential informants commit crimes of violence on January 6?” the Texas Republican continued to press.
“I can’t answer that,” Sanborn again responded.
Sen. @tedcruz says the Biden admin needs to “fess up” as to whether or not the FBI is “a politicized law enforcement operation” that actively encouraged illegal conduct on Jan 6. pic.twitter.com/7L3qdWJL9u
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) January 12, 2022
Whitmer Releases Statement
Governor Whitmer released a statement following the verdicts in the kidnap plot. In it, she continued to cling to the notion that the case was a result of extremist rhetoric.
“Today, Michiganders and Americans—especially our children—are living through the normalization of political violence,” she claimed.
“The plot to kidnap and kill a governor may seem like an anomaly. But we must be honest about what it really is: the result of violent, divisive rhetoric that is all too common across our country,” added Whitmer.
“Without accountability, extremists will be emboldened.”
Without accountability at the FBI, the extremists there will continue trying to entrap people with opposing political views – be it the right-wing or Muslims they have often accused of having links to terrorism after 9/11.
The Bureau is out of control. There needs to be an investigation and they must be purged of any other politically motivated extremists in their ranks.