The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Wednesday that a 22-year-old North-Carolina man, Benjamin Ryan Teeter, has pleaded guilty for conspiring to provide material support and resources, specifically property, services, and weaponry, to Hamas, a designated foreign terrorist group.
Teeter and co-defendant, Michael Robert Solomon, met with an FBI informant that they mistook for a Hamas operative numerous times, a DOJ press release stated. In recorded conversations, Teeter and Solomon stated that Hamas and the Boogaloo Bois shared similar anti-government ideas. The duo also desired to be Hamas mercenaries to finance the Boogaloo movement. (RELATED: Self-Proclaimed ‘Boogaloo Bois’ Charged With Conspiracy And Attempting To Provide Material Support To A Foreign Terrorist Group)
The Boogaloo Bois are a highly decentralized organization advocating violent anarchist ideas, the DOJ stated. The name “Boogaloo” itself refers to an “impending” second U.S. civil war, a belief held by several anti-government groups.
In subsequent meetings, according to the DOJ, Teeter suggested to the informant ways of helping Hamas, including bombing U.S. government buildings. He had even pointed the informant to a northern Minnesota courthouse as an ideal Hamas target.
The duo acquired a drill press to build suppressors they thought would be utilized by Hamas on July 6, the press release stated. After delivering their first five suppressors to the informant and another FBI agent whom they thought was a senior Hamas operative, they consented to produce additional ones, hoping that they will be used against Israeli and U.S. military personnel, according to the DOJ.
The two were taken into custody on September 3, and a day later, the Justice Department announced a federal criminal complaint charging them with conspiracy.
The case is a result of an FBI investigation conducted with assistance from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), according to the DOJ. It is prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew R. Winter, and Trial Attorneys George Kraehe and Phil Viti of the National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section.
“This case highlights the real threat posed by domestic violent extremists who self-radicalize and threaten to violently attack others opposed to their views, with little or no warning,” Michael Paul, a special agent at FBI’s Minneapolis field office, stated.
“Preventing terrorist attacks is the FBI’s number one priority and the primary mission of our Joint Terrorism Task Forces. The FBI and its task force partners will persist in using every investigative tool available to identify, assess and disrupt those willing to compromise the safety of our neighbors and communities.”