According to DOJ documents, federal agents have arrested three men from Gaston County, North Carolina, on conspiracy charges in a plot attack the government. The men are accused of prepping for a martial law scenario by stockpiling weapons, ammunition, tactical gear and attempting to rig home-made explosives.
The complaint against the three men, Walter Eugene Litteral, 50, Christopher James Barker, 41, and Christopher Todd Campbell, 30, mentions Jade Helm 15 as having fueled their impetus to ‘violate federal laws’.
Federal authorities have compiled almost 60 pages of information on the men since July, it includes allegations that Litteral planned to makes explosives out of tennis balls covered in nails and coffee cans filled with ball bearings. Litteral and Campbell had for several months begun collecting other military gear like radios with throat microphones, grenades, armored vests, ammo and assault rifles.
Campbell reportedly stated that he and Litteral had a base camp on 99 acres of land in Clover, South Carolina, and had intended “to booby-trap the camp and draw government forces into the camp and kill them,” according to court records. Barker later joined the two men, bringing in materials to make pipe bombs, investigators said.
The FBI began its investigation in mid-June after receiving a tip about Litteral and Barker attempting to make homemade explosives, and later began investigating Campbell based on similar information that he was attempting to reconstruct grenades.
Litteral was quoted in the documents calling his planned homemade explosives “game changers,” and authorities allege he planned to test the devices with Barker in Shelby, North Carolina.
The federal conspiracy charges carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. In addition, Campbell has been charged with a separate firearms charge punishable by 10 years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine.
In addition to the FBI, agencies assisting in the investigation include the North Carolina Highway Patrol, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Federal Air Marshal Service as well as local police in Charlotte, Belmont, Mount Holly and Gastonia.
The men will remain in federal custody pending the outcome of detention hearings scheduled for Thursday. It was not immediately clear if they had attorneys.