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Website operator pleads guilty to terrorist threats

Grant Gross | Feb. 10, 2012
The founder of several Muslim jihad websites has pleaded guilty to three charges related to making online threats, including threatening the writers of the television show "South Park," the U.S. Department of Justice said.

Morton and Chesser also published information explaining the Islamic justification for killing those who insult or defame Muhammad.

Chesser was arrested on July 21, 2010, charged with providing material support to militant Muslim group Al-Shabaab and later also pleaded guilty to communicating threats and soliciting violent extremists to desensitize law enforcement. Four days after Chesser's arrest, Morton fled to Morocco, where he resided until his arrest on U.S. charges on May 26, 2011.

Revolution Muslim was connected to several U.S. and U.K. residents arrested on terrorism-related charges, the DOJ said.

Muslim jihadists connected to the group included Colleen LaRose, also known as Jihad Jane, of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. LaRose was charged in March 2010 with several terrorism-related offenses, including plotting to kill Lars Vilks, a Swedish cartoonist who depicted Muhammad. LaRose subscribed to the group's YouTube accounts, the DOJ said.

Also connected to the group was Antonio Benjamin Martinez, of Baltimore, Maryland, who was arrested and charged with plotting to bomb a military recruiting station in December 2010. One month before his arrest, Martinez viewed multiple terror-training-camp video clips on a Revolution Muslim website, the DOJ said.

Rezwan Ferdaus, of Ashland, Massachusetts, was charged in September 2011 with plotting to attack the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol using large, remote-controlled aircraft filled with plastic explosives. In February 2010, Ferdaus emailed Morton asking for counsel regarding his duties as a Muslim and whether martyrdom operations were proper practice. Morton replied that martyrdom operations must be judged by intention but can have "enormous benfits (sic) in a war of attrition."

 

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