Oct. 3 (UPI) — A U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant accused of stockpiling weapons and plotting a domestic terrorist attack to set off a race war is expected to enter a plea deal Thursday, according to court filings.
A change to Lt. Christopher Paul Hasson’s court docket on Wednesday states that he is scheduled to appear before a federal judge in a Greenbelt, Maryland, court for a re-arraignment on Thursday, suggesting that he is planning to enter a plea deal. He pleaded not guilty to the four counts against him during his first arraignment. The conditions of the plea deal are not known.
“In general, re-arraignment indicates a change of plea,” said Marcia Murphy, the spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney in Maryland, The Washington Post reported.
Hasson was arrested in February on gun and drug charges, but prosecutors said he planned to “murder innocent civilians on a scale rarely seen in this country.”
Prosecutors called Hasson, 50, a self-described white nationalist who FBI agents discovered had 15 firearms and more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition and a hit list of some 20 names of prominent activists, political organizers, left-leaning media personalities and Democratic congressional leaders, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.; Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-M.A.; and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.
FBI agents also found over 30 bottles labeled as human growth hormone in his Silver Springs, Maryland apartment.
Despite a federal judge ordering Hasson detained prior to trial, prosecutors were unable to bring terrorism charges against Hasson, who was indicted on gun and drug charges.
During their investigation, authorities discovered that Hasson was a follower of Anders Breivik, a Norwegian far-right domestic terrorist who killed 77 people during two attacks in his native country in 2011. Hassan had read Breivik’s 1,500-page manifesto and was following the terrorist plot instructions it laid out, such as taking steroids and compiling a cache of weaponry.
In an email addressed to “Dear Friends” FBI agents found on his computer, Hasson said, “I am dreaming of a way to kill almost every last person on the earth” blaming liberals for “destroying traditional peoples esp white.”
The Coast Guard began investigating Hasson in 2018 after a computer program designed to find threats within the service identified Hasson as a person of concern.