National Security

Georgia Man Arrested for Plotting Attack on White House

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Federal authorities arrested a 21-year-old Georgia man on Wednesday who they said was planning to attack the White House.

Authorities said Hasher Jallal Taheb, a 21-year-old man from Cumming, was acting alone.

Taheb was arrested while allegedly trying to exchange his car for explosives, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. A local resident tipped off authorities that Taheb had been radicalized.

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the man's attack was supposedly going to take place Thursday.

"Taheb’s alleged attack on the White House was supposed to take place around Thursday and involve various explosives and firearms, though even days before he claimed he had still never fired a gun in his life, according to the criminal complaint. He said he could learn fast, the document said. Authorities also said he planned to travel to the Islamic State territory but acknowledged he didn’t have a passport," the newspaper reported.

"All potential threats have been neutralized and were under control from the inception of this case," U.S. Attorney Byung J. "BJay" Pak said.

Last year, an FBI informant reached out to Taheb after he reportedly put up his vehicle for sale.

The report explains what happened next:

He also told the informant he wanted to attack the White House and Statue of Liberty in jihadist attacks, authorities said. At the beginning of December, Taheb arranged a meeting with the informant and an undercover FBI agent, the complaint said.

"Taheb explained that jihad was an obligation, that he wanted to do as much damage as possible, and that he expected to be a ‘martyr," the complaint said.

A few days later, there was another meeting in Alpharetta, during which Taheb allegedly showed the FBI worker a composition notebook with a hand-drawn map of the ground floor of the West Wing in the White House. Taheb seemed to believe the informant and FBI worker would join his plot if they could find weapons, according to the document.

FBI agents met Taheb in a parking lot in Georgia on Wednesday, with the man planning to exchange his car for various weapons. He was arrested by agents during the exchange.

Taheb faces a sentence of five to 20 years for plotting to destroy a government building. On Wednesday evening, law enforcement was searching the home where he is said to live with his mother.